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The best writing teachers...

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      I'm working on my own abilities as a writing teacher. I outsourced my older child's writing instruction but my daughter struggles even with other teachers. I'm not the best writer but I may be the best option she has currently. I hope that changes if I can help her out this year. 

My daughter and I were discussing her problem with an upcoming paper when I realized that what she was looking for was a rubric. Duh! She immediately agreed. 

So as I try to reform myself I thought I'd start a thread on what skills the best writing teachers have.  Remind me of those things that a good writing teacher does. 

These are the things writing teachers need of which I was recently reminded : 

  • Clearly stated standards and goals for assignments
  • A focus on the process and how to guide student to accomplish the next step

 

 

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Reinforce the idea that high quality writing involves multiple iterations of revision. 

Offers a specific revision guide or checklist. This might be similar to a rubric, or it might be more detailed. 

Doesn't put a grade on rough draft efforts but reflects on what does and doesn't work while encouraging further revision. 

Recognizes the difference between creative, persuasive, and analytical writing and that student proficiency in each may be at different levels.

Models the writer's process with her own writing. (It can be humbling to sit down to write an essay. The block many people have with supporting documentation for college applications is often a form of writer's block.)

 

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Giving students both the big picture of what the assignment end point is supposed to look like and provides incremental assistance to get there with feedback before things get too far off-track.

The best writing teachers are encouraging - always helping the writer get a little better every time without overwhelming a student with too many critical comments at once.

Edited by RootAnn
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