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View Diary: Warnings From The Trenches (188 comments)

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  •  The only way to teach writing (7+ / 0-)

    The only way you will get good writing is if Students take English/Composition classes where they have to write papers every week or two throughout the course of the entire year. And you have only do that if teachers have small class sizes that allow them to grade all of those papers.

    •  at secondary level issue not class sizes (7+ / 0-)

      but total load on the teacher

      the late Ted Sizer argued that secondary teachers should have no more than 85 students in all their classes.  One can argue if one is really teaching writing the number should be about half that because of how much assistance students need.

      My heaviest load ever was 196 students in 6 periods.  Social Studies should involve writing, but I think you can see the problem I faced.

      In my current setting in an inner city middle school with 7th graders, I only have 67 students on the roles, and practically on any day I would be lucky to have 55-58 of them show up.  Which is good because of how much they are high need students.  Which doesn't matter because DC is test score crazy, and the kind of writing they have to do in order to succeed on the tests is not necessarily good writing, but is easier to assess and score.

      "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

      by teacherken on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:24:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  My experience... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CA wildwoman, Mostel26

        I confess that in my AP history classes, the teacher acknowledged that she did not have time to assign term papers because of the shear volume of material she had to cover. So she taught to the format of the essays that the AP exams tested on along with in class essays required for her own in class exams. However, it was also understood that the school itself required intense writing instruction in its English classes, so the AP history teachers could rely on the fact that their students were acquiring those skills in parallel.

      •  I'm so sorry again, but it's attendance rolls ... (0+ / 0-)

        I tend to proofread automatically, which is why I can't type very fast. Seems to be my last functioning brain cells ...

        Something that doesn't make good sense, makes bad sense. That means someone is being deliberately hurtful & selfish. Look for motives behind actions & words.

        by CA wildwoman on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:58:00 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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