Writing is unique from other subject areas such math, or science because it so greatly relies on the facilitation of ideas rather than the relaying of constant factual information to the students by the teacher. How writing is taught is heavily dependent on teacher values. Whether it is a preference in implementation methods, expectations in conventions, or approaches to diverse students and their writing content, a teacher's values and beliefs will be evident through their approaches to this subject. The subjective nature of writing education makes it crucial for teachers to be aware of how every decision in the curriculum and assessment has a significant impact on students' growth and performance. Teachers often make the error of assigning specific assignments, such as worksheets, reports or writing exercises without truly considering the real purpose of that assignment. It is an understandable mistake, given the sheer mass of lesson plans teachers must create for a number of academic subjects. However, in a subject that promotes a creative thought process and encourages cognitive depth, assigning "busy work" comes with several potential setbacks in student progress.
[...] Although many educators believe that correcting spelling and grammar is important, the constant correction can often hinder a student's creativity and flow of ideas. Elementary students should always feel that their ideas are the main focus of their work. Many times the students will feel as though they need to use correct spelling and grammar in order to make their work good enough for the teacher. In the article “Correcting and Giving Feedback to Writing,” Zeliha Gultcat and Oya Ozagac of Bogazici University say that teachers should focus only on grammar because students start to think that grammar is the only thing that counts in writing” (par.12). [...]
[...] Process Genre Approach to Teaching Writing." ELT Journal 54 (2000). Blake, Brett Elizabeth. "Fruit of the Devil: Writing and English Language Learners." Language Arts (2001) 435- Mar 2009 < http://www.ncte.org/journals/la/issues/v78-5>. Glasswell, Kathryn, McNaughton, Stuart, Parr, Judy M. "Four Ways to Work Against Yourself When Conferencing With Struggling Writers." Language Arts 80, 4(2003) 291- Mar 2009 < http://www.ncte.org/journals/la/issues/v80-4>. Gulcat, Zeliha and Oya Ozagac. “Correcting and Giving Feedback to Writing.” Boun.edu. Sept Bogazici University March http://www.buowl.boun.edu.tr/teachers/CORRECTING%20AND%20GIVING% 0FEEDBACK%20TO%20WRITING.htm. Jasinski Schneider, Jenifer. "No Blood, Guns, or Gays Allowed!: The Silencing of the [...]
[...] The best method to teaching writing to ELLs is stressing the importance and methods of process writing. This way it's not an or nothing” situation with writing. Teachers of ELLs should provide ample opportunities for writer's workshops, peer conferencing, brainstorming, and revising (par. 3). These strategies help students familiarize themselves with the writing process and become more comfortable with the subject. With the correct help and guidance from dedicated teachers, perhaps their attitudes towards writing will begin change. In addition to ELLs, another group of students that teachers commonly overlook are those who struggle with writing. [...]
[...] However, the student's ability to think freely and take risks is also the source of problems that teachers face in writing instruction. In an article Blood, Guns, or Gays Allowed!: The Silencing of the Elementary Writer” by Jenifer Schneider, Schneider reveals that when teachers feel uncomfortable with certain topics written about by students, they often limit what students produce (par. 2). For instance, Schneider interviewed several teachers during her research and asked them if they had established restrictions during free writing. [...]
[...] The teachers also stated that they would most likely limit, redirect, or silence a student's writing in some way if they were to write about other taboo topics such as homosexuality, or about obscure religions or beliefs foreign to them, such as Wicca or “devil worship.” (par. 28). On the other end of the spectrum, several teachers interviewed were much less restrictive and more tolerant in their instruction. These teachers did not feel it was appropriate to control students' writing. [...]
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