Thursday, November 15, 2007

Professional Writing

One of the most thought provoking session for NWP's annual meeting involved looking at professional writing and publishing. It got me thinking about how many ideas teachers have that are not shared. Now that blogging has gained more popularity with educators, there is more publishing; however, few teachers (including me) feel confident enough to write professional articles for various publications just as the English Journal. Imagine if more teachers went beyond thinking that their ideas were not worth sharing and began to write and submit their writing to publication. Blogging is still new to many teachers - maybe this is a good way to introduce yourself to taking another road to publishing.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Heading to NYC!

I am looking forward to my trip to New York for the National Writing Project's annual meeting and the National Council of Teachers of English annual convention. NWP's conference will aid me and my fellow site members in further improving our site so that more teachers can benefit from the professional development, research, and programs we provide. NCTE's focus is on literacy's of the 21st century. Since my goal for this school year is to provide my students with authentic writing activities that utilize technology, I look forward to many new ideas

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Audience awareness

I just read this post by Dawn Hogue on the benefits of blogging in English class. I have heard many complaints about technology and how it is ruining literacy. I am sure that is the case in a few instances; however, the majority seem to be thriving. Dawn's class writing was described as "prolific" and I have seen this with students on their class wiki. While their wiki has been a bit disjointed, students are starting to link their comments to others and rearrange information on the pages to make sense. So, not only have I seen an increase on the ideas and details in their writing, but I am also starting to see a more attentive look at organization.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Multigenre Identity Unit

My ninth grade class is currently working on a multi genre identity unit. They have been excited with all the choices involved and have produced some inspiring written work. One aspect is the literature circles with young adult novels. Their novel choices were: Buried Onions by Gary Soto, Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Mikaelsen, Growing an Inch by Stanely Gordon West, Define Normal by Julie Ann Peters, and Monster by Walter Dean Myers. Some students had experience with literature circles prior to this, but for many this is a new adventure. I'll be reflecting more on this as the unit continues. In addition to reading a novel, students are being exposed to a variety of written genre including poetry, news articles, a movie, and even a Dr Seuss book (they hadn't had story time in so was great to see their excitement). Part of the unit is the creation of their own multi genre identity project. They have begun to write poems and dialogs, and in a week, we will venture online to add in a Google my map of places that are important to them. I am enjoying watching them view mentor texts and then apply writing skills to their own pieces. Their personalities are already showing...some poetry and dialog has been hysterical!