Cover image of Self-Reliance eNotes Teaching Guide

Self-Reliance eNotes Teaching Guide

by eNotes

  • Release Date: October 09, 2019
  • Subjects: Language Arts and Literature
  • Age Levels: Grade 10, Grade 11, Grade 12, and Grade 9
  • Pages: 10
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So you’re going to teach Ralph Waldo Emerson's "Self-Reliance," a classic essay that has been a mainstay in English classes for generations. Whether it’s the first or hundredth time you escort students through the text, we've provided some teaching tips to help ensure that the experience is rewarding for everyone, including you. Teaching "Self-Reliance" will familiarize your students with the basics of transcendentalism and expose them to rhetorical strategies used in expository writing. Further, students will be able to discuss themes surrounding the nature of self-reliance and the extent to which Emerson's philosophy applies to our contemporary world. This guide provides you with the essential components to keep in mind before you take your students into Emerson's discourse on the nature of genius and self-reliance.


Our eNotes Teaching Guides have been designed to help first-time and veteran teachers open up classic works of literature for their students. Each guide provides creative and practical approaches to teaching the text, as well as rich background information, key plot points, and recommended texts.

The main components of each guide include the following:

  • An overview of the text and its key components
  • Teaching approaches and discussion questions
  • A list of complementary texts

These Teaching Guides offer valuable context and promote meaningful discussions about novels, plays, poems, and stories that have captivated English Language Arts students for generations. Each guide is comprehensive and concise, thought-provoking and practical.

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