Program Goals of Literature
BJU Press Literature teaches students to read for wisdom and enrichment as well as for pleasure. Each literature book includes a broad range of literary selections from different cultures, genres, and time periods. In addition to analyzing literary elements and interpretating meanings in a selection, your students will learn how to evaluate literature from a biblical worldview.
- Read a broad range of literature from different cultures, time periods, and genres
- Analyze texts for their techical literary elements
- Read for deep comprehension of texts' ideas and meanings
- Evaluate ideas and content from a biblical worldiview
- Develop critical—thinking skills
BJU Press Literature uses different instructional approaches based on grade level. In Grades 7 and 8, the approach is thematic. Grades 9 and 10 introduce a critical literary approach with literature from various cultures and genres. A historical approach in Grades 11 and 12 focuses on analysis and biblical evaluation of the historical and cultural content of each author and his work.
“BJU Press Literature teaches students to read for wisdom and enrichment as well as for pleasure.”
The Bible is composed of beautiful literature created by God to convey His message. Indeed, a quarter of the Bible is poetry. Adam authored a poem only a few hours after he was created (Gen. 2:23).The stories of Scripture are the best literature humanity has ever known, including grand epics (Exodus and 2 Samuel), powerful poetry (Isaiah 53), and artful prose (I Corinthians 13). The Bible clearly places a great deal of importance on literature and therefore the study of literature should be a central piece of a biblical worldview education.
Literature, even the works of fallen people, can serve as a tool in a Christian’s pursuit of glorifying God. By exercising the skills of literary interpretation and technical analysis, students will evaluate representative selections of literature in terms of both merit and biblical worldview, thus promoting cultural literacy. Through literary study and criticism, students learn to engage other cultures and worldviews with discernment.
We believe textbooks must be biblically and academically sound. We define academic rigor as an educational experience that helps students develop the ability to analyze, critically evaluate, and ultimately create new ideas or products.
Diverse selections of recognized literary quality form the backbone of our textbooks’ academic rigor. Grade-appropriate selections both meet and challenge student reading levels. Selections in the student text are supported by instructional content in introductory essays, headnotes, Thinking Zones, and before-reading pages—all designed to deepen students’ understanding. These sections provide the literary, historical, and cultural context for a selection, and explain technical terminology.
With a critical framework in mind, students can then read with clear direction and engaged thinking and work toward deep comprehension. A deeper, richer understanding of a text through analysis, interpretation, and evaluation will give students the knowledge to become a vital part of class and small-group discussions. Following the selection, questions review key concepts and assess students’ analytical, interpretive, and evaluative abilities. Students will also improve their writing skills through a variety of assignments that challenge them to compose original pieces.
“The Bible is composed of beautiful literature created by God to convey His message.”
Secondary Literature helps build higher-order thinking skills by using instructional frameworks that step students through the reading with an emphasis on scaffolding toward greater critical thinking.
Intensive study of imaginative literature can open the door to a vast new realm of reading comprehension and pleasure. Analyzing literature for structure and theme helps students learn to read for ideas. Learning how writers convey meaning indirectly by metaphors, allegory, symbols, irony, and allusion can help them detect nuances unnoticed by many readers. As a result they can better appreciate the richness and significance of artful writing. Students are challenged to evaluate each author’s ideas from a biblical worldview.