amazing great video production powerful message listen up.
amazing great video production powerful message listen up.
So my very first impression of step up to writing was “dang this thing is amazing” I mean they give you the play by play instructions that in essence will take a student from the a. . b. . c’s to short. . sto. . ries. But as i take a little closer look i begin to ask myself “where is the freedom for ceativity? This program seems to lead students into cookie cutter compositions by providing a little too much structure. How are students supposed to learn from their mistakes if they dont make any? I think this strategy could be a gift and a curse wrapped up in one giant curriculum. It provides the necessary steps to get to the top of writer’s mountain but it seems like at first glance this program will create mindless robots who know all the rules for writng but lack a ginuine passion for writing.
One thing that I do love about this writing program is the creative ideas on getting students to memorize those boring rules. For example having students seperate their paper into three sections to show that a sentence is made up of different parts is a great teaching tool and yea i just might steal that for my future teaching. This program has other great tools that would enhance teaching but i believe it must be coupled with a little more freedom and creativity. Katie Wood Ray sold me on the idea of allowing students to make errors without getting docked points. The purpose of teaching writing is to help students engage the process and develop a ginuine love for writing. A bunch of worksheets would do it for me if i was in third grade. I would just feel like “let me hurry up and finish this dumb worksheet so i can go to recess.” If there was some way to teach the key literacy components that are presented so well in this writing program, without drying up the well of our young writers that would be the perfect storm of a writing program.
To be or not to be? Is this the question? Is literacy as black and white as it seems? This exhilarating journey that started with that bold question of What is literacy has taken my mind to new levels of thought on this issue and has essentially refocused my attention on the importance of literacy. Our society today is built on the fundamentals of literacy, and it can be argued that without these fundamentals life will be difficult if not impossible. This is evidenced by how helpless we as Americans become when we travel to a foreign country with no background knowledge about their system of language. Being forced to fall back on primitive forms of communication that would be akin to a game of charades would be the only way we would be able to survive in an environment where our communication skills are rendered useless. This is a crazy picture that is true of the very same problem that English language learners have in our school system and society in general.
Being in a network of future teachers, we all hear the bone chilling stories of working with students that have absolutely no foundation in speaking English, let alone reading and writing. How do we help these students on a communication bridge made out of toothpicks. One story in particular helped me understand the difficulty involved with learning to communicate with a new language. A 1st grader at Chapman elementary is an ESL student. With a vocabulary very limited due to language barriers, this student is subject to mimic what ever the teacher or student teacher is doing with the sounds coming out of their mouth. One lesson a student teacher was teaching the sounds of the alphabet, and as students would get a sound right, this student teacher would say the sound, then say “uh huh, that’s right.” When the student teacher came to this ESL student and it was their turn, the student would say the sound coupled with an attempted “uh, huh” jumbled together. I believe this mix up shows the difficulty of overcoming the barriers involved with becoming literate. It is a co-labor between the student and teacher to make leaps and bounds into the territory of be coming literate.
An astonishing fact that affects literacy in our youth is their exposure to pre literacy experiences as their brains are developing in infant and early childhood. Many studies have shown that social class and pre literacy exposure has a direct correlation. In one study done it is estimated that children with professional parents were exposed to 35 million words by the age of three. In the same amount of time children of middle class families were exposed to 20 million words, and children who belong to working class families were only exposed to 10 million words. This in essence sets the stage for the different levels of literacy that are so evident in our classrooms today. According to Gwendolyn Cartledge, “Learners from low-income families or minority backgrounds are less likely to speak standard English, and many enter kindergarten without the pre literacy experiences and oral language skills needed for early classroom learning. More than 50 percent of urban learners are substantially deficient in reading; for urban African American and Hispanic learners, the rates approach 70 percent. The problem is not just in Houston it is nationwide. So as future teachers what are we going to do?
It all starts with gaining the knowledge and skills necessary to close this achievement gap and help these students advance in literacy. Katie Wood Ray would say that students need ample practice to get great at the craft of writing. Scribner would argue that the place that literacy flourishes is in a community of learners. Szwed would proclaim that literacy as an ideal is suffering a crisis as evidenced by wealthy nations like ours having a severe deficiency in literacy. Gee would make his point on how literacy can be diverse and we as teachers need to engage what students are naturally reading and writing. Dewey will push for teachers to shift their focus from themselves to the child, and see the child as the sun in which the appliances of education revolve around. Jahai would chime in and say ” i like it all but AHHHHH where do i start.” And here it is. It all starts with this tumbler post and it moves on into that scary paper that Kim Jaxon is warning us about. Then it continues with the application of everything learned in ENG 333 into real life situations in real life classrooms. And finally it wraps up in a literacy revolution in which old paradigms are toppled and new walls built with the voices of all the above mentioned pioneers in literacy are erected. This is where we are going people and im just happy im along for the ride. YEEEEE!!!!!!!
Inspiring is the Life of Will Smith. For some reason the video is not working on tumblr so here is the link a must watch. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSK_Likqv24
Quote in taylor stairs
Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. - wisdom
So funny but yet so profound, the way we pack students into small classrooms you would think that they were the size of ants. This is a great way to use digital media to make reading more exciting. I couldn’t help but be glued to the screen as the words moved all around it. I know from experience that it takes a lot of time to make these bcuz my roommate does video editing for my church. The amount of math that goes into a video like this is crazy which brings up another idea if resources were available that would be cool if a future class of mine was able to make one of these bridging the gap between language arts and math. Now thats using an interdisciplinary approach to education. Bottom line its engaging and digital is the future. So I will definitely be scouring the world wide web for these videos that will be relevant to my teaching. Holla!!!
Wonderful writers learn to write well while reading wonderous words written by wiley authors. Katie wood ray is a genius. I love the fact that she uses veteran authors as her t.a.’s in the class. Teamwork makes the dreamwork. If learning is the most optimum at the collaborative level i believe teaching is as well. Afterall if our society didnt learn from its past success and failures, advancement would be impossible. So the idea of using guided discovery of the tools great writing by reading great writers is genius. I also love the fact that katie wood ray sees writing identity as an integral part of learning to write well. She related this concept to the idea of a seamstress having a different perspective on shopping because they are learning to produce a similar dress. If writers had this same perspective while reading they can find the gold mine that the author buried in their soil of wonderous words. I believe this same tactic should be applied to us students learning to teach. We need the perspective of a teacher while we are digging into all this material on how to be a great teacher. We need to see our students needs before we ever walk into a classroom. I feel like this style of learning is missing from our schools today so many students learn just enough for a passing grade rather than seeing application of their learning as the final destination. How much of this is effected by performance based tests you be the judge.
Just had a great night with celebrity guest judge verizon dude @ “my time talent show” like him on facebook “verizon dude”
If you direct your passion you direct your destiny what are you passionate about?