At this point, I have looked through some of your purposeful reading evidence from the first section of reading for The Alchemist. What I’ve seen so far is solid work. However, the common “mistake” I’ve seen is students failing to go beyond the plot when jotting down notes. This is not to say that notes of plot summary lack importance, but it is essential that you go beyond the plot when purposefully reading. The following list of items may help you to do so when completing the next section of reading:
Look for/consider the following when purposefully reading literature, and jot down notes (on Post-its, a sheet of paper, etc.) accordingly:
· “Ah-ha” moments
· Clarification of confusing aspects
· Connections to other readings, personal experience, etc.
· Favorite lines, sections, etc.
· General comments
· Notes about the author’s style
· Recognition of literary elements (e.g., flashback, irony, symbolism, etc.) in action
· Unfamiliar words/allusions (and their definitions/purpose once you’ve looked them up!)
If you have not done so already, read the blog post entitled “Senior English—Our Purpose in Reading The Alchemist.” This information should further aid you in reading the novel purposefully.