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Showing posts from June, 2009

Memoir Piece - Monkey In The Morning

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A regular occurrence for me is recalling New York moments. It is now close to three years since I moved back home to Australia permanently, but those moments from our New York life come flooding back all the time. Given the cultural and intellectual diversity of this urban giant, it was almost certain that each day you would encounter a moment that left you dumfounded, or at the very least shaking your befuddled head in utter disbelief. It is one of the many things that makes New York so intriguing. You have to laugh, or at the very least have a quiet chuckle to yourself…

-And so it was one unsuspecting Saturday morning. I awoke after a pleasant Friday evening spent entertaining friends. I felt ready to dive head long into the weekend. Meaning, I did not feel seedy or disoriented. Vicki was standing at the north facing window of our then apartment looking down at the rooftop opposite.. She had a puzzled look on her face. ‘That’s either a small child or a monkey in a suit down there’ sh…

Being Explicit When Teaching Writing Craft Strategies

Teaching the craft of writing requires teachers to be explicit in their work with students. This occurs when we provide a progressive and sequential program of instruction when we are clear about what it is we want children to learn and when we provide a meaningful, focused program of instruction.

When consideration is given to focused learning we need to provide students with opportunities to make sense of the learning by creating purposeful connections between lesson purposes, lesson tasks and texts, and lesson reviews or conclusions. If these aspects of our lesson align, we increase our chances of success.

When introducing a new craft strategy we need to:

Explain to students the purpose of the instruction and why you have chosen to involve them in such instruction;
Explain the strategy explicitly, specifically saying what it is, and how and when it should be used;
Model the strategy in authentic writing situations, saying when it is most useful or even when it is not applicable;
Think a…