Date of Award

6-13-2007

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

English

First Advisor

Chapman Hood Frazier, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Deborah Carrington, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Rhonda Brock-Servais, Ph.D.

Abstract

This action research project explores the value of flash fiction in the secondary classroom. Flash fiction draws heavily on oral traditions such as the joke, and the fable, to present complete stories in fewer than 1500 words. The form has flourished in recent years, particularly on the internet, where literary journals such as The Vestal Review, SmokeLong Quarterly, and Toasted Cheese, publish engaging, and provocative stories. By examining how students react to the unique characteristics of flash fiction, teachers can make the most this valuable and abundant resource.

This article describes how students at a public secondary charter school responded to a unit on flash fiction. Data from writing assignments and online discussions during the unit show that the unit on flash fiction helped students become more engaged readers and more confident writers. An analysis of the flash fiction that students chose to study suggests that flash fiction may enable teachers to differentiate lessons more precisely based on gender, interest, and ability. Specifically, flash fiction may be particularly appealing to male students who do not consider reading a masculine activity. Methods for teaching flash fiction in conjunction with online threaded discussion forums are also discussed as a method of integrating the study of literature with new literacy skills required in online environment.

Share

COinS
 
 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.