Gentle readers, when we were last together, I shared some ideas for assessing the spirit of workshop with an emphasis on assessing both process and product without looking for perfection. Instead, in writing workshop, we look for growth. When we consider assessment separate from grading (something too personal, too school-by-school to really make broad recommendations […]
“I’m crying in the middle of this Panera Bread”: not a comment I imagined I might need to add to a bank!
I used to work a very structured private school. It was a school for students with ADHD and learning disabilities. The structure was part of the programming there that served to support these students as learners, not just at that school, but if they returned to public school classrooms. Though I teach much differently now […]
My first year teaching AP Language, I was overwhelmed by the grading. The class culminates in a three hour exam; for two of those hours, students are writing three different essays. The amount of prep your average student needs to confidently bang out three essays asking them to do three different things in two hours? […]
I acknowledge that learning to really craft writing on demand (rather than brain-dumping on demand) is an important skill for our students to cultivate. They will all engage in some kind of timed, test-like writing situation in their academic lives. And after that, they will still be asked to compose something on-the-spot in job interviews […]
I love a giant leap. A big swing. I want to tell you that I carefully research, weigh, and plan each and every instructional decision that rolls forth from my desk. But I don’t. More often than not, I don’t think all that much. I come up with a wild “What if?”, jump, and see […]
Last year, I began to notice a curious but recurring pattern — students’ final papers lacked many of the elements we noticed in the mentor texts. It was as though students had forgotten that we studied the mentor texts for days and days and made grand lists of noticings. It was as though they had […]
Facepalm. By the second panel of the 2017 Greater Madison Writing Project symposium, “From High School to College: Engaging in Writing Dialogue,” you could have made a meme of me (or at least my inner monologue, since I managed to keep my outer composure), sitting like Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Captain Picard with my head […]
When Allison and Rebekah asked me to begin a new year of blogging by considering the first thing I would want the writers I teach to understand, this post nearly began writing itself. You see, I’ve spent this summer learning more about the power and practice of pedagogical documentation, and this has inspired some unexpected shifts […]
Use these five tips and the tools provide to coach high quality peer review sessions.