Teacher Feature: Alexandra Solove

Reading+between+the+lines%3A+English+teacher+Alexandra+Solove+speaks+to+her+class%2C+her+quote+wall+behind+her.+She+designed+the+wall+with+student+interests+in+mind.

Reading between the lines: English teacher Alexandra Solove speaks to her class, her quote wall behind her. She designed the wall with student interests in mind.

By Andrew Bucko, T/E Life Editor

Nestled in room 270 is a labyrinth of images, quotes and words to live by. Almost every square foot is plastered in tape and posters. The woman behind all of this: English teacher Alexandra Solove.

Solove’s room has been a space for the exploration of English Language since 2009. Currently teaching American and World Literature, Solove said her goal is to keep her students engaged at all times. The collage that covers her walls is how she ensures her students are always learning.

“I think it makes sense in the classroom because my feeling is that if you’re not paying attention, at least you’re hopefully looking at or reading something worthwhile,” Solove said.

Solove carries her theme of interactivity into her instruction, always aiming to keep her students attentive and participating.

“It’s all through communication. So you’ll never come into Ms. Solove’s classroom and it’s quiet unless it’s test day,” Solove said. “So that, I mean, that’s usually the goal of every period, to get everybody talking.”

Just as her classroom is lively and full of conversation, Solove’s childhood home was exactly the same.

“I have three siblings. So I would say it was always a little crazy. Anyone who knows me knows I have a pretty big personality. And I would say all three of my siblings are the same way. So it was very entertaining. It was very loud, it was very competitive. It was very fun though. You know, it was before cell phones. So we spend a lot of time outside on our bikes and playing games and not on a computer,” Solove said.

After graduating from Parkland High School in Lehigh, PA, Solove studied to be a teacher at West Chester, where she still lives today. Solove said she doesn’t see herself teaching any other class than literature due to its dynamic nature.

“I have always loved reading something, experiencing something that takes me out of my element, that, especially as it relates to fiction,” Solove said. “The irony is that we think we get more information from nonfiction and we do, but I actually think in order to be immersed in someone’s experience, sometimes fiction is almost more effective.”

Solove is so dedicated to literature that she often allows books or movies to inspire her travels. She has been to England, France, Italy, the Czech Republic, Hungary, the Caribbean, Mexico and all over the United States. This summer, she plans to visit Scotland.

“Whenever I pick a spot wherever I’m going, it’s because I saw a movie or read a book or some kind of a piece that took place there,” Solove said. “I just think getting out of your element is so important, no matter how old you are.”

In the meantime, while she’s not travelling, Solove plans on adding to her gallery of quotes and snippets.

“I’m always taking student artwork,” Solove said.