A student recently asked me: "Dr. Brigman, when will we be done with CRIT?"
(His question was echoed by the groans of a dozen other students.)
My response: "You'll never be done with CRIT!"
I wanted to tell the students that understanding how to closely read a text is one of the most important things they could ever learn as students. If they go on to college, close reading will likely be one of the first assignments they receive in a literature class.
Moreover, close reading shows their ability to unpack a piece of literature, dig for deeper meanings and think critically independent of the teacher.
CRIT is so important because close reading is really just an English teacher's way of saying, think for yourself!" In life, as in English, thinking for yourself will be essential to everything you do.
Since September, students have worked on mastering the six steps of the Close Reading Interpretative Tool, or "CRIT." Close reading requires readers to take a passage from a book, article, newspaper, blog, or magazine and "unpack" the text's meaning.