Make Cycles

Our course is organized by “make cycles,” a term I borrow from Connected Learning. You can find the tasks for each cycle in the drop down menu above.

Google+ Community

We will our work in a Google+ Community. We will upload images, respond to each other’s ideas, and share links and “makes” here.

Winter Session: Revise and Reflect

Winter Session: Revise and Reflect

Winter Session: Revise & Reflect

“…our goal is not better books. Our goal is better writers”

–Wood Ray & Cleaveland

We’ll spend the final two days revising and reflecting on the ideas for teaching writing. My goal: I hope you leave this fast-paced course with a reflection and manifesto that you can return to when you have your own classroom. As you begin prep for your first year of teaching, I hope you will re-read your reflection and think about what matters to you in the teaching of writing and go on to create assignments and activities for your students with that foundation. If you haven’t already, I would also suggest that you create some way to curate all the resources you are gathering (perhaps by subject area). You might create a Google Folder where you keep notes, links, readings, etc that you want to return to as you plan for your classroom.

For my own teaching writing manifesto: it matters that students control their writing as much as possible. Students should make more of the decisions about what and how to compose than I do for them. Writers should decide what goes into their texts. I want students to know that their ideas matter and that their own goals for writing should drive their choices about audience, structure, genres, and distribution. I want students to play with a variety of forms and platforms so they can make informed choices: from microblogs like Twitter to long form essays to multimodal compositions. These forms are not better or worse: they serve different goals for writing. And I want them to see writing as both challenging and playful. Most importantly, I want students to know that writing does things in the world and they can use writing to impact their world.

In this last make cycle, we’ll think about revision using one of your previous makes and we’ll use the ideas from About the Authors to support the revision work.  You all have an amazing body of work you’ve created in this short time to refer to as you write your reflection. I might get started by reviewing all your posts and your makes. (*Note: if you click on your name in G+ from any of your posts, you should be able to see all your posts in one page.) Take some notes about things that stand out to you as you re-read all your work. The notes will help you write the reflection.

I am grateful for all your work this winter session. It has been a joy to read your writing.

In a nutshell:

  • Jan 17: Respond to two prompts for Chapter 8 and Appendix K.
  • Jan 18: Reflection & Manifesto due in shared Google Doc (check my Google email for sharing: kjaxon@MAIL.csuchico.edu NOT kjaxon@csuchico.edu thank you!)

Day 12: Jan 17

Today’s tasks: respond to two prompts for Chapter 8 and Appendix K.

Two part prompt for About the Authors Chapter 8 (139-153) and Appendix K (221-231) 

a) In chapter 8, the authors talk about ideas for conferencing with students. I can remember being in a 1st grade classroom a few years ago where I watched in awe as 7 year olds came up to the teacher and said things like “I’m ready for my ideas conference,” “I’m reading for my revision conference,” or “I’m ready for my editing conference.” I was struck by how articulate these young writers were: they could communicate easily about where they were in the writing process and what they needed to move forward, even when the actual writing was only a couple of sentences and a picture. 

What do you notice about the author’s approach for conferencing? What might you want to try out? You could also talk about overall take-aways from this book. What do you want to remember when you create your writing plans? You could think of this as a draft that you can use for portions of your reflection assignment.

b) In appendix K, the authors have great suggestions about how to approach revision with children. Notice how they think about extending a text with smaller kids, cutting and polishing in another grade level, and rewriting once writers have a more sophisticated understanding of revision. I’d like you to use the ideas in Appendix K to think about how you would revise one of your makes from this winter session. Explain to us which “make” you would revise and how you would revise it if you had time; then tell us how the chapter helped to inform that decision.

Post in G+ under Revise & Reflect: Chapter 8 & K


Last Day! Day 13: Jan 18

Manifesto on Teaching Writing

30 points

*IMPORTANT: this assignment will be shared in a Google Doc with me and not posted in G+. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE note that my email is different for google sharing: kjaxon@mail.csuchico.edu

This is the culminating assignment for the class. You will write a manifesto that describes your beliefs about the teaching of writing, and articulates your intentions as a future teacher to implement those beliefs.

One way to approach this assignment would be to start by writing a reflection about your work in the class: what ideas resonated with you? What do you want to remember from the readings (About the Authors, articles, mentor texts)? What did you learn about yourself as a writer? What are you proud of and what was a struggle? Use the readings and your previous work to support your reflection.

Then, reflect on your activity plan from the past two days: how did your activity work out? Did the writer (your partner) complete the writing tasks like you expected? Anything surprise you? What would you revise in the activity based on the writer’s work and their feedback to you? 

Finally, create a bulleted list–your manifesto–things you believe about the teaching of writing. Your list can be as long or as short of you see fit.

Here are examples from last semester’s course in case they’ll helpful:

Grace’s reflection & manifesto

Kaia’s reflection & manifesto

Rafael’s reflection & manifesto

So, in a nutshell, this final assignment should do three things, but the order below is only a suggestion. You can include these three things in any order that makes sense to you:

  • Reflect on your work in the course: the readings, the mentor texts, your writing, etc. What ideas, texts, work stands out to you that you’d like to remember? (Expect this to be 2-4 paragraphs)
  • Reflect on your activity plan: how did your activity and your partner’s response to your activity turn out? (Expect this to be 1-2 paragraphs)
  • Create a bulleted list: your manifesto about teaching writing. *Note: you could start this assignment with the bulleted list and then use the reflection and your make to explain the ideas from your manifesto. The manifesto does not need to come last (but it might take writing the reflection to be able to create the list–you can always then move your manifesto to the top if that makes more sense to you).
  • In total, this will most likely be 3-4 pages. Less than 2 1/2 pages and you probably are not providing enough examples to the above 3 ideas; more than 4 and you might not be focusing in on your favorite take-aways. 😉

Instructions for sharing a Google Doc.

  1. Go to: http://www.csuchico.edu/google
  2. On left, click on Google Drive login
  3. May ask you to log in with Chico State portal ID/password
  4. Click on “New”: Choose Google Doc from the drop down menu under New. You’ll now have a blank google doc.
  5. Name file in upper left corner (click where it says “Untitled”). Use last name in title and perhaps Reflection. For example: Munoz_Reflection_Engl333
  6. Click Share in upper right and share with me: kjaxon@mail.csuchico.edu. Set it so I can comment or edit, not just view.  I’ll get an email saying it is shared with me.

Again IMPORTANT. This assignment will be shared in a Google Doc with me and not posted in G+. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE NOTE my email for sharing in google: kjaxon@mail.csuchico.edu

 

Thanks for all your work! And if you’re heading into the spring semester, best wishes for spring!