Making Frameworks Work

Collerson (1997) has used terms developed by Halliday to form something of a double decker framework. One framework has piggy-backed onto another. It’s the arched window of frameworks and I can’t get it to stick in my head. The notions of interpersonal and experiential are too similar in my mind and I am not yet able to distinguish the two clearly enough. The over-arching considerations of context and culture are well-placed, a constant reminder.

Kress and vanLeeuwen (1997) make clearer distinctions with the terms referential, interpersonal and compositional. Those terms start to take root and the very word ‘compositional’ brings pictures to mind as well as language and layout.

Callow (2008) serves my purpose best of all. A framework has to work, not just look pretty, and I can see this one working in the classroom. Affective – feelings, emotions and personal justifications. Compositional – actions, setting, imagery, pictures, layout, angles, lines. Critical – the ‘missing’, alternative viewpoints and endings. These things can be talked about on any level, from simple to complex, with children and adults. And so theory is easily transferred to practice.


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