Saturday, July 20, 2019

Teaching Students How to Write Essay -- English Writing Teacher Studen

Experience shapes us, randomness shapes us, the stars and weather, our own accommodations and rebellions, above all, the social order around us. Adrienne Rich, "Of a Women Born" My four-year old daughter now has the yearning to learn how to write. She scribbles illegible swirls, which she says is her story about a princess. She prints her name "Olivia" on books, magazines, and on her drawings. When she has a pen or crayon in hand she has an immediate urgency to write her name and where ever there is a flat surface she prints her name incorrectly. When I tell her there are not two "I"s in her name and attempt to show her the correct spelling, she throws her crayon in the air. What is essential and what I must remind myself is that at the moment, in her world, the spelling of her name is Oliia. When I hover over her shoulder as she scribbles, she stops writing. She feels inhibited, so now I resist teaching her writing. This is how I imagine many teachers feel when faced with a pile of essays written by high school students, which are streamed with grammatical errors and incoherent sentences. They feel apathy, as do many students, about writing. After reading t exts required for our composition theory class, I sympathize with students', teachers' and my daughter's frustration. Time is spent on error identification and what constitutes a finished piece, rather than on the potential of a piece of writing and the process of completing that piece. Time is not spent on how to create a "good" piece, or as Donald Murray describes, "rehearsal, drafting, revision and connecting." In a sense I could say Olivia is rehearsing the spelling of her name. It is no wonder she is throwing her crayon in the air, because I am correcting her versus ... for Conflict." Contending with Words. New York: The Modern Language Association of America, 1991. 105-124. Kirsch, Jesa E. Ritcie, Joy S, "Beyond the Personal: Theorizing a Politics of Location in Composition Research." College Compositon and Communciation 46 (Feb. 1995):7-19. Murray, Donald M. A writer teaches writing. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. 1968. Rich, Adrienne. Of Woman Born. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.1986. Royster, Jacqueline Jones. "When the First Voice You Hear Is Not Your Own." College Composition and Communication 47.1(Feb.1996): 29-40. Welch, Nancy, "Revising a Writer's Identity:Reading and "Re-Modeling" in a Composition Classroom." College Composition and Communication. 47(Feb 1996):41-27. Zawacki, Terry Myers. "Recomposing as a Woman-An Essay in Different Voices." College Composition and Comunication 43(Feb.1992):32-38.

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