So is it Skill or Perception?
It's got to be both.
And, a Disclaimer.
The Case for Ditching Your Current Assignments
1) Collective Student Efficacy
"The most important skill for a teacher is his or her ability to build trust with a student, which develops when students can sense that the educator is willing to hear their ideas, thoughts, and musings despite their challenges with grammar, low grades, or test scores in previous classes."
2) Depth versus Breadth
What to slice? Assignments for or about a text. In one paper students can engage with a text, demonstrate understanding, practice specific, tiny writing skills, and do it over and over again.
But how is there time?
2nd and 4th Term only
Any Text. (Seriously.)
I’ve taught it with The Book Thief, Romeo and Juliet, The Great Gatsby, Hamlet, The Kite Runner, American essayists, and independent novels. I've taught it in 9th grade and Concurrent Enrollment. It is universal and magic, I promise.
- Be mean
- Redo versus Do again
- The case for written feedback
“Students' attributions about success or failure can often have more impact than the reality of that success or failure. There can be deleterious effects on feelings of self-efficacy and performance when students are unable to relate the feedback to the cause of their poor performance. Unclear evaluative feedback . . . is likely to exacerbate negative outcomes, engender uncertain self images, and lead to poor performance”
The Feedback Trifecta
- In-text: Skill
- Bottom of the page: Connection
- Golden Moment: Power
- Mini Lessons and Handwritten Corrections
- Reading Whole Papers to the Class
- Reading Golden Moments
- Passing around positive models (post grading)
- Passing around all submissions (pre grading)
Students see the scores stack up, those low points replaced, and then write their final reflection with their own writing process, papers, and feelings as the text.
English 1010 AND English 2010 final assignments!
Your Take Out Bag
We can and must teach writing in a way that will form specific skills and create a positive writing identity for our students. Give them a voice, give them practice, give them a platform. Give them this. And, I promise, you will be shocked at what they give in return.
Created with images by Joanna Kosinska - "Minimal pencils on yellow" • Steve Johnson - "Screwed up paper and trash can" • Angelina Litvin - "Pencil shavings on a notebook" • Adam Birkett - "DEAD END" • ASTERISK - "untitled image" • Susan Yin - "untitled image" • Oleg Laptev - "untitled image" • Kelly Sikkema - "Ideas waiting to be had" • David Pennington - "The world’s best pencils. Apparently. In a world inundated with the freshest technology, no one has ever found a reason to improve upon a pencil." • Green Chameleon - "Designer sketching Wireframes" • Kaitlyn Baker - "untitled image" • Georgie Cobbs - "Taken at Paper & Pixels Design Studio, Gibraltar" • Dana Marin - "New text notebook" • Ana Tavares - "Gratitude Journaling" • weisanjiang - "classroom guiyang tables" • NeONBRAND - "ready for notes"