We want more comics integrated into education, yes? There are a lot of inspiring, powerful stories out there with important messages. One being Lumberjanes. Thanks to CBLDF, we now have a way to bring the “Friendship to the MAX” girls into the classroom. Meryl Jaffe recently wrote a post about Using Graphic Novels in Education. I found the entire piece to be incredibly well rounded, chocked full of useful tips and pointers.
Along with an overview of what Lumberjanes is all about and a review, Jaffe provided readers with teaching discussion points and critical reading examples. She also went as far to provide information on language use, modes of storytelling, and paired readings.
Here’s a bit of what she had to say:
Plot, Themes, and Values Related
Discuss the name of the camp, Miss Quinzella Thiskwin Penniguiqul Thistle Crumpet’s Camp for GirlsHardcore Lady Types.” What image does it relay? What does it tell us about the camp? What does it foreshadow about the story?
Discuss the choice of names for the various characters. What do the names say about each of the characters? How do the names “fit” or “not fit”? How do the names influence our perceptions of these characters?
Discuss and/or chart how Jen is used as a humorous foil for the girls and for Rosie (the Camp Director).
Discuss and chart the different themes in the books.
Discuss ways one can be different from others. Discuss how one can be different and still fit in.
In the “Message from the Lumberjane High Council” in Volume 1 it says: “…Whether you are a dancer or a misfit, career girl or a social elite, you have a place at this camp — no matter how different you feel.” How does the story, and how do the characters reflect this?
I think this is a wonderful resource. Something that can also provide a way for all of us to read comics on a deeper level. I look forward to seeing more things like this in the future. If you know any teachers, urge them to take a look at this!