The Whole Story...
Abstract of PhD Submission
In this thesis I investigate the nature of written responses made to stories
in an educational context, which can be characterised as aesthetic transactions
with a text [Rosenblatt, 1938, 1978, 1985]. My research develops Guidelines
designed to elicit such personally meaningful responses from teachers
to pupils' stories as well as from pupils to the stories they read. I
map those features which characterise the engaged and appreciative responses
that I both made and received from primary and secondary teachers and
consider in what respects they may be educationally valuable. I also consider
how such responses could offer a form of meaning-related, interpretive
assessment for the work of pupils as story writers and story readers.
This thesis also tells the story of my journey as an educational researcher.
It acknowledges the mistakes I made, the confusions I grappled with and
what I discovered in the course of my investigation about myself as an
educator and about the values that underpin my thinking which sustained
the whole enterprise.
I offer this thesis, therefore as an original contribution to the nature
of engaged and appreciative responses made by teachers as well as by pupils
in the field of story writing and story reading.
I offer it as an original contribution to the educational value of such
responses as a form of interpretive assessment in the context of classroom
teaching and external examining.
I also offer it as an original contribution to educational knowledge -
the process of coming to know - as I have sought to construct my
developing perceptions as a living educational theory.
You can download the PhD in chapters which are stored in Microsoft Word
The page numbers and footnotes may change.
Prologue: Two stories to start
Ch.1.Assembling some maps p.14-25
Ch.2.Voicing my intentions -
then other voices join in p.26-37
Ch.3.Three primary excursions p.38-61
Ch.4.I encounter The Knight
and the Mushroom p.62-75
Ch.5.Responses to three further
stories written by secondary pupils p.76-95
Ch.6.Thorny thickets p.96-100
Ch.7. Sharing our understandings
Ch.8.Making my own maps p.119-135
Ch.9.Exploring the field of
reader-response theory p.136-181
Ch.10.Asking questions and making
Ch.11.Moving further afield
Ch.12.Reclaiming the imagination
Ch.13.Primary pupils’ ‘Secondary
Ch.14.Year 8 pupils respond
to Ice p.274-289
Ch.15.A Y10 story reader responds
to two sets of Guidelines p.290-303
Ch.16.Assessing pupils as story
Ch.17. Assessing pupils as story
Ch.18.Does It Matter? p.354-378
Afterword - stories waiting
to be told p.379
Appendix - All the pupils’ stories