Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Chapter 14

Chapter 14
                The take-away from this chapter…there are 7.

1.        Believe in the voices that once led us. We learn to write by writing. This is something that I have embraced this year with a free write journal.  The students can write about ANYTHING but I do have a topic available if they feel they need a starter.

2.       Believe that the human spirit is too elusive, to vast, and too diverse to be defined bt a single assessment. This is something that I believe wholeheartedly, even outside the realm of writing. Why don’t the powers that be understand this?

3.       Believe that we can and must create assessment to match our vision of good writing instruction. This is a constant area of struggle for me. I am always looking to improve in this area.

4.       Believe that students can write. I am believing this more and more as I am figuring out how to teach my students. I also see this through the writings of my 7 year old in first grade and even 5 year old in preschool.

5.       Believe that writing isn’t just a skill for school, but a skill for life. This is very true and I know that as a 34 year high school graduate, college graduate twice, a former counselor, and a current adolescent Language Arts teacher. To have students of positive school experiences understand this is a challenge, much less students that have nothing but negative school experiences.

6.       Believe that voice is power. This is exactly what I hope to teach my students through their journals.

7.       Believe that you can teach. This is a constant work in progress for me. This is one of the reasons that I enrolled in a teaching writing class. It has truly helped!


  1. Erin, I love your theme about believing. For some, it may just seem optimistic, but I truly believe that when we genuinely believe in our students it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Sometimes I find when I clearly, but briefly, demonstrate a strategy and then give ample time for students to show me themselves...they frequently amaze me!

  2. I like how you have a reflection on this chapter with a unifying voice and style -- almost poetic. I believe it is a strong positive philosophy that gets us up in the morning, and dedicated to do the hard work of teaching every day. You are right, the "powers that be" need to look to more than just numbers on a page.

  3. Erin,
    I agree with you that students need to be able to write as it is a vital skill they will need for the rest of their lives, even if they do not go onto higher education. Writing is a skill they will need no matter what they do. Most successful writers have a good base of positive writing experiences.