A New York Times article explores a new approach to classroom literature and the Catch 22 that it creates. Inspire a love of reading by letting students choose their own books to read and assess? Or ensure a common body of literature and ease the weight of standardized testing by having all students read and analyze the classics together?
Most experts say that teachers do not have to choose between one approach or the other and that they can incorporate the best of both methods: reading some novels as a group while also giving students opportunities to select their own books. But literacy specialists also say that instilling a habit is as important as creating a shared canon.