#clmooc teach writers

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Please read this important post by Kim Douillard:
https://thinkingthroughmylens.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/a-burr-in-your-sock/

I’m thinking about these powerful words Kim wrote

“I worry about who in our schools gets the most formulaic writing. Why are our English learners, our students of color, our students who live below the poverty line most likely to get writing instruction that is pre-chewed, scaffolded to the point that no thinking is required? In the name of being helpful, we are robbing students of the opportunity to make sense of their thinking through writing.

And yet, letting go of the formulaic means inviting messiness, losing control, welcoming confusion in order to find clarity and coherence. What replaces the formula? That is a question that I am asked over and over again. The answers aren’t easy, they aren’t neat, and they mean teaching writers rather than writing.”

The answer is there:
“teaching writers rather than writing” so that they can “make sense of their thinking through writing.”

We offer many choices for authentic writing and teach the writer– the wordsmith.

We can accomplish this through student planned frames rather than formulas. I’ve written about it here:
http://whatelse.edublogs.org/2014/07/06/clmooc-play-is-the-game/

I’m also remembering the work of James Moffett: Active Voices- Writing across the Curriculum and others books. http://www.amazon.com/Active-Voice-Writing-Program-Curriculum/dp/0867092890#

His work reflects much of the Connected Learning Principles as students write in genres they choose for their audience and purpose. Important is oral language, peer feedback, and and choice in a workshop approach to teach each writer.

Isn’t that what we’ve learned from technology as well? We teach writers what they need ‘just in time’ for their needs and purposes.

What do you think?

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#clmooc Play Revision

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REVISING a Blog I Started Last Year

Revision Steps — ideas so far

1.  Starting: A reflection and revision of my work last year in the post: Play is the Game

2. Adding Meme Activities to Connect2Learn Blog

a. Memes as Avatars [revising an old activity ]
b. Memes  Activities which link to Mindy A Early’s meme activities

3. I am looking for any middle school teachers who want to connect and develop the Connect 2 Learn blog.

An Invitation

As I said in Part 1:

So, I’d like to invite the middle school teachers to help me with this, if it fits their interests. We’ve all got our own standards to meet, but we’ve learned through CLMOOC that those can be met in a variety of ways, and that connections and collaborations deepen the learning of more than finite objectives.

So, what if a group of middle school teachers collaborated on a blog of makes and prompts that promote the Connected Learning Principles through the lens of the Thinking Frames? The blog would suggest the prompts and makes; the students could write about their projects in their own blogs or Google Docs [ and collaborate in Google Docs or Wikis ], and share their play/work in comments on the blog prompt.

Whether we incorporate prompts from Digital.IsCLMOOC Make Bank, or our own prompts, the blog will be the hub for our connected classrooms. Here’s what it might look like:  Connect 2 Learn Blog, Connected Learning and Writing FramesGuidelines. I’m hoping a middle school community blog will provide the hub for connected learning and play with writing [in all its forms].

I’m excited to be more playful this year, to bring joy back to the classroom. I want my students to expand their worldview carefully and become more digitally literate. And maybe together we can make it “Game on!”

How about you?

Will you Connect 2 Learn to keep the game going?