Read the article Writing in the 21st Century, complete the Reflective Prompt, and create a Delicious Account. Once you have created your Delicious Account, share your user name with the group.

Carrie W
3/29/2011 05:02:53

Welcome to SWIFT! I hope you enjoy reflecting and sharing your work on the Wofe MS blog. I think this is one of the biggest changes with Writing in the 21st Century - social networking. It is an exciting way teachers can share new thinking online.

Please check out my delicious account. My username is - cwozniak. You can also look at my delicious account on the right of the blog page.

3/29/2011 08:01:41

Checking to see if I did this correctly

4/1/2011 05:37:33

I see your post, Jamie, so you did do it correctly!

Hi everyone. My username is amaruca87. I will be adding interesting links to my delicious page soon!

4/7/2011 02:12:26

Hello. My username is moronis1978.
Create Delicious Account...Check!

4/7/2011 05:01:15

"Think about the way you write. How has it changed since you were in school? What is different? What has stayed the same?"

After reading the article Writing in the 21st Century, a lot of memories of my past writing experiences came to light. First of all, I do not think anyone explicitly taught me how to write and if they did, I really do not remember how or what techniques they used. The use of technology as far as composing was concerned, was at best, the first Apple (which used the dos programming system). The way I gathered and researched information was also A LOT, and I mean A LOT less advanced. All of these things made me think how prescribed teaching writing has become over the years. For some reason, even with the all the different programs available to reach students of every ability level, when a teacher mentions a writing assignment groans seem to fill the room the same way they did when I was in school.
When I think of writing when I was in school, which wasn’t too long ago (stop laughing, I’m in denial) one of the things that come to mind is writing “reports” about particular topics. How did I do this one might inquire? Well, I usually used my text book, or an encyclopedia to gather information about my topic. The topic was usually assigned by my teacher and everyone in my class had to write about the same topic. Sometimes I would go to the library and look books up in the card catalog to find they were already checked out (because everyone had the same topic). Then I would go home and begin writing my “report”, by hand I might add. While I was writing, I would spend a lot of time making sure all my sentences were grammatically correct and that I did not spell any words incorrectly. When I finished writing, I was not finished with my assignment. I then had to make an outline of the information written in my report, because the outline was a part of my grade as well.
You can say a lot of things have changed in the way I write since I have been in school. When I research a topic now, I have a whole world of information at my fingertips with the use of the internet. The internet is also very useful to find books that are located in different libraries. I am even able to check the books or journals out on-line and pick them up at my earliest convenience. This is very different than driving or calling around to different libraries to find the book you want has already been checked out. In college, especially in my master’s courses, my instructors offered many options for writing assignments, many times in the form of reflective journal writing. I feel by adding the term “reflective” it then becomes a type of writing more people tend to enjoy. I compose my writing directly on the computer now…no more writing out assignments by hand! Finally, one of the last ways my writing has changed since I have been in school is the way I utilize outlining. I used to hate making outlines, but I now feel it is a useful technique to give me direction before writing and keep me on track during writing.
With the many things that have changed in the way I write, I still have one habit that I feel hinder my abilities as a writer. I have a very difficult time free writing a rough draft. I teach my students to free write and even express how important it is for them to get all their thoughts out on paper first before they do anything else. However, I feel I spend way too much time scrutinizing every sentence before moving on to another. I believe this makes writing a laborious task and this may be a reason students hate academic writing so much. Yet, ask a student to respond to a blog or Facebook post and the response will be overwhelming. If we want to create a new generation of writers, then the way we instruct writing must incorporate things that gain student interest while minimizing their fear of being judged.

4/8/2011 00:00:23

Writing when I was in school was focused mainly on the grammar and mechanical aspects of writing. There was a huge emphasis on spelling as well. My writing as an adult seems to have the same focus. Teaching writing today seems to be in transition. There is still an emphasis on proper grammar and mechanics especially in the elementary grades. There is also a strong focus on spelling words correctly in the elementary which then become ingrained in the students and gets carried over into the middle school. Teaching writing in the middle school seems to be more focused on content initially and then revising with grammar and mechanics second. The emphasis now seems to be on the students being able to put their thoughts on paper and not worry about the details of grammar and mechanics. This approach seems to give the reluctant writers the confidence to attempt to put their thoughts on paper. The use of peer editing and revision gives the students the skills and confidence to write, make mistakes, and correct those mistakes without any judgment or penalty. This beneficial change in the approach to teaching writing enables students to expand their knowledge base and develop a love of writing that was missing before.

4/29/2011 02:40:34

I will concur with Moroni in that it is difficult for me to recollect grade school writing much; though I do recall, with clarity, my out of school writing. While my own experience is antidotal at best, it flies against the comment “they tended to remember writing for the pain or isolation it was meant to assuage” (Writing in the 21st century). I wrote from a desire to emulate my favorite writers, rather than to vent any adolescent/teenage angst. I wrote for the prospect of creating worlds or places. As I have grown older I find that my prior experience has shaped the way I write into a more familiar tone than a formal one that is normally dictated.

As I’ve matured in view point I have come to see the importance of a formal tone and proper mechanics in business or science writing. It conveys a sense of professionalism and attention to detail. These practices hopefully instill in the reader a trust in the capabilities of the author to convey accurate information and avoid miscommunications (ignoring cognitive biases). I unfortunately see this lacking in our current environment.

The broad reaches of the internet has changed the communication environment we live in. We are able to express things “aloud” in an environment without social cues, and reach beyond our usual bounds. I can never, and will never, argue that this ability has not brought grand events. One need only look to the current movements in the Middle East to find positive benefits to this new global reach. But I wonder how much this new methodology has changed writing? As I am not a language major by any stretch of the imagination; I can only express a layman’s view. Are we mistaking the new medium of the internet for writing when it might be best described as communicating? The pace and use of the internet is more akin to stream of thought than a composed letter. Which of those two points are we trying to reach?

4/29/2011 02:43:41

Delicious username


5/1/2011 03:59:06

my username is marahbrandimarte
When thinking about the way I was taught to write, and how things have changed since I was in school I quickly think about how words and phrases have been shortened or abbreviated. A few examples of this are LOL and TMI. I also consider how helpful computers have been for spell check. When I was younger I had to get out the good ole' dictionary, and five minutes later I finally found the word I was looking for. I am grateful for the advancements technology has made in the writing" world.

5/2/2011 11:09:35

My user name is trombleyl

When I look back on the way I used to write it just gives me nightmares. Using they stone tablets in ancient Egypt was very difficult...just kidding. Although I do remember going through a lot of correction tape to finish a paper. I do not even want to recall how many times I started a paper over because I wanted to change the order of just a few things.

My keyboarding skills were not the best either. Worst of all was my total lack of understanding of how to spell. Poor organization, weak typing skills, and very little ability to spell made every paper an adventure.

It is much easier today. It is no problem editing a paper and changing just about anything. The backspace button has helped with my sentence structure, and spell check had greatly improved my spelling. Kids today sure have it a lot easier than I did.

J Hackett
5/5/2011 09:24:10

Introduction: Jamie M. Hackett
user name hackettj7

Think about the way you write.
How has it changed since you were in school?
I decided to get creative and ask my FB friends. I received may interesting comments.
It use to be paper and pencil with several rewrites in essay format to prove what wisdom you gleaned from the assignment.
I use a computer.
I write for fun and my amusement.
I write to vent my feelings.
I write because I like to text my friends
I blog to keep a record of my trips and special events in my life
I had to write and rewrite rough drafts. Then, run around and find books from the library or information in my textbook. Finally, I had to sit and write the report redoing if I made an error. In comparison, today there are mass amounts of information available on the internet with inter library loans and spell checks on the computer

What is different?

Use of technology -
Most students now enjoy typing their assignments however, a large percent in my classes still don't know how to effectively use spell check, or other tools to enhance the paper grammatically. They spend hours on adding touches such as clip art, color, back ground.
There are so many new writing outlets available and utilized by students at home yet, are blocked at school.

What has stayed the same?

To put your thoughts, feelings and information down into some kind of print.
My work makes me.
To get a paycheck.
To remind myself of things I have to do
The need to communicate to others in print

5/16/2011 01:19:21

Delicious Acct. Sheri_W.

I have to agree with Moroni when it comes to how things have changed. Reports were assigned and it was off to the library to look into the card catalogs...then to the books and encylopedias. I would hand write everything and later when I when in high school, I remember typing out my research reports on the newest typewriter (of the early 80's). I can also recall many hours spent with correcting typo's with that special correction tape. The only fun form of writing was "passing notes" or yearbook writing.

I became better at writing when I took many classes about teaching writing to my 4th graders. I became a better writer when I taught them and they would give me feedback on my writing.

I believe the computer and ways to research are so much better than we had. Even for me, I have learned how to look things up on a computer - I am not a pro at it - but I am always amazed at what I can find. Writing is easier for me today than it used to be because of the computer. From looking things up or the actual typing of my writing. Presentations are easier for kids to do today if they know the tools of power point. Blogging is also something that is different today. People used to write in their own notebooks or diaries and today, they put it out there for everyone to see and discuss.

The things that have stayed the same would be that writing is a form of communication and that it is important to know who your audience is. It is important to get your ideas across, but also know who you are writing to.

5/27/2011 00:52:46

Just completed 1st module.

My earliest memory of writing was is 3rd grade. Our teacher directed us to write a first person story as if we were one of the fish in the classroom fish tank.

In elementary teacher school (1995?), we were taught that writing developed before reading. At that time, I was convinced that, by reading good writing, one would become a better reader. However, my feelings on the subject have changed to the contrary.

I also find it interesting that education is usually set up to provide in depth writing instruction at the secondary level instead of the primary level.

Perhaps this will one day change for the better.

Ron Howery
5/27/2011 01:45:18

Module 2

use the templates for sequence of events to develop instructions for solving/simplification of equations.

The American Rhetoric website was interesting and actually worked on my classroom computer :). I liked the alliteration segments.

5/28/2011 04:00:37

My delicious account username is wilcoxe.

The biggest difference between my writing in school and the writing instruction I'm seeing now is that I never remember being instructed on how to write creatively. Word choice, humor, literary devices and the like were appreciated by some teachers but generally considered to be superfluous. From middle school on, in English at least, we read a book, chose from a list of prompts and wrote a 5 paragraph essay (intro, 3 body paragraphs, conclusion). Most of the focus was on how to write a thesis, and use evidence from the book to support it.
In college, my very first English professor told us he hated the 5 paragraph essay. Most of my writing in college focused on learning how to please whatever department I was writing for. My psychology papers demanded a certain organization and jargon. Extra details and opinions were not appreciated. In my English classes not including opinions meant I was just summarizing,not including details meant I had only read the Sparknotes, and the longer my papers were the higher the grades typically were. In Political Science if my papers were longer than a page I got marked down.
In graduate school the focus became more of what I considered "writing for me"- reflections, lesson plans, quick writes. These were judged not on the format I chose but the depth of my thought.
Being that I'm just out of school, I haven't seen a huge change in my writing yet. I still seem to be writing in response to a requirement and my focus is still my purpose, whether it is an email back to a parent, a lesson plan, a grant application, a text message, or a blog that I'm trying to knock out on Memorial Day weekend because I procrastinated.

5/28/2011 10:29:04

I guess my account is Szymanski5

5/28/2011 10:32:13

After reading Module 1 it reminded me of how boring it was to learn to read. It seemed more of a drill rather than a worthwile experience.

In today's writing world, you have to fight the internet/text language and try to teach the proper way to write. It may seem like a losing battle but, in order for students to achieve, they have to learn the proper way. I have always enjoyed doing journal entries and have topics that deal with pop culture or something current that has value in the students world today. If I look at my writing back in high school it was not very good because I did not practice enough. When I hit college that is when I produced some of my best work. With students today, practice is key.

5/30/2011 21:54:17

delicious account serbian chick

Module 1 was a great reminder of how writing has evolved for me in a positive sense, and I should clarify here, the process of TEACHING writing. Although I consider myself a strong and effective writer personally, I have never felt comfortable in teaching writing. It was a literal nightmare...until I was enlightened when I taught a 4/5 split 4 years ago and Crothers. Bev Blair introduced me to the beauty of Lucy Caulkins and my comfort zone increased two fold as I spent entire afternoons free writing and brainstroming, reading related texts and eventually putting together a book.

A strong grammar focus this year has enhanced my 8th grade classes' writing ability. Thanks to an afternoon session with Nancy Endres, a phenominal writing teacher, I learned the techniques of Vivid Verbs, Thought Shots and other strategies to help me in instructing my students in a far more effective and meaningful manner.....

Love it !!! but how do we rbing those transfer studetns up to par? This is our biggest challenge....

Jennifer De-Smet
5/30/2011 23:41:02

My username is jpd1219

Amber Baaso
5/31/2011 00:02:41

After reading the article, Writing in the 21st Century, I reflected on our writing prompt. The way that I learned to write in school was, for me, to pass a written test or turn in a good "report". As Sara said, I do not remember the particulars of composition and I think that is due to the fact that depending on the teacher, the writing style varied. I remember one particular teacher wanted a certain number of sentences and another was really big on transitions. I would write, with pen and paper, to the teachers ideas of composition. This changed as I reaced college and the professors seemed more interested in my voice and my opinion on books, philosophy, science, or whatever else we were studying.
In college is where more of my writing was done on the computer (but not all). However, at this time, my writing was still for the teacher and not for my peers. I like the idea of sharing ideas with others going through the same process and having a chance to question/comment. It gives a lot more purpose and especially reflection to the question, book, or whatever else you are composing for. I did see a little of this type of composition when I reached my Master's program and blogged about assignments.
The main reason and want for writing has been and still is to communicate with friends and family. However, the style in which I do this has changed. While in school this would be through written notes and sent letters, but now technology has allowed communication through writing in e-mails, texts, and networking sites.
We need to have the technology in our schools that allows students to write and have a voice the way the are exposed to in their daily lives.

Jennifer De-Smet
5/31/2011 00:11:43

The way I write now is, mostly and unfortunately, for function purposes - grocery lists, e-mails to parents and family, thank you notes, and lesson plans. The last time I wrote strictly for pleasure was before my son was born. I wrote him letters about the experiences I had while carrying him. Not since his birth have I had the pleasure of writing because I wanted to - not because I had to. Prior to my son's birth, I wrote frequently - comments on articles I read, lengthy but friendly e-mails, in my own Journal, etc. As life has become more hectic, my writing has become more functional.
Since I was in school, the act of writing has changed. Obviously, technology has changed the tools used for writing. Even in college, I wrote my essays long hand. Now, students expect that they will use a computer to write. Overall, and as the article mentioned, I feel writing has been devalued. In school, I CHOSE a class called "Composition." Now, students get writing instruction lumped in with "English Language Arts." Only recently, have other subject areas been asked to participate in teaching writing. Even in college, whole COURSES where graded based on the essays that I wrote. Now, it seems that if the type of writing isn't on the MEAP test, it isn't focused on. I can recall EXPECTING that I would rework a piece over and over and over (long hand nonetheless!) because that is what writers DO. Now, it seems students are exasperated when it is time to do a first revision. In that aspect, I think writer's attitudes have changed. Finally, what has changed is students are no longer "held back" if they aren't on grade level/considered proficient writers for their grade level. A close friend of mine "flunked" an elementary grade because her writing skills were not at grade level. Now, students are "passed along" despite not being able to write virtually anything.
What has stayed the same is we, citizens in a culture, are still expected to write in school. What has also stayed the same, as mentioned in the Report from NCTE, is the association with unpleasantness.

Amber Baaso
5/31/2011 02:30:54

My username for delicious account is:

Bill Trachsel
5/31/2011 23:37:31

As I reflect on the way I write a couple of things really stand out: I was always a very reluctant writer in school, which is a nice way of saying I hated to write. I wrote some great essays, but it was such a struggle for me because I was always my own worst critic. I had a difficult time expressing my thoughts in writing in large part because I wanted to write something that the teacher would be happy with. Writing seemed like an exercise in conformity. That's not to say I was rebellious in any way, I just felt that I wasn't writing for me, but for someone else. It wasn't until college that I had an opportunity to write the way I wanted to write. I was allowed an opportunity to be creative with my writing. That's when I realized that people liked my perspective and enjoyed my writing. It finally felt good to write, and I looked forward to writing every day. This is something that is missing from a lot of writing instruction. I can certainly relate to the student who struggles with writing essays or taking written tests. I probably bombed every written exam I ever took because I only wrote what I thought others wanted me to write. If we want our students to truly enjoy writing then we need to allow them opportunities to write in their own way without judgement. This however, goes against what is expected in school and on standardized tests. We tend to discourage voice and perspective, and try to reduce writing to a formula. For some students it works, for others (like myself)it makes writing seem like a chore. I never liked doing chores :)

Bill Trachsel
5/31/2011 23:38:24

My delicious account name is trachselw

6/1/2011 03:33:42

My username is wharfieldj

6/1/2011 05:25:26

As quoted in the article, “…. Society has focused on children as readers because, historically, it has been much more interested in children as receptors than as producers of the written word.” MY…. HAS THIS THOUGHT CHANGED. As we now know, more than ever, “writing has been historically and inextricably linked to testing.” Students of all ages, abilities, backgrounds, learning styles, etc… are expected to produce detailed summaries in combination with well supported pieces of evidence in their writing across curriculum (even in Math and Gym classes, here at Wolfe these days) in order to become more prepared for the professional world, which has been dominated with varied means of communication.

Other than the booming use of technology (and use of short hand abbreviations, slang, etc…), writing has remained the same over the years since I have been in school in the sense that it always has and always will require a “good deal of labor.” That is….labor for those who strive to follow each rule in grammar, sentence structure, spelling, sequential order, etc…. Writing is an art. A skill. And like any skill, it requires practice, revision, feedback, trial-error, and more practice!

Today, more than ever, students are challenged to proceed with the writing process and use clarity/voice to target a given audience. Critiquing the writing of others and determining an author’s purpose is often the question on the tests of today.

Jennifer Wickersham
6/1/2011 23:01:02

My delicious accunt username is

Got it?

Kevin Wickersham
6/1/2011 23:01:05

My delicious account username is wickershamk

Hope this works...

Jennifer Wickersham
6/1/2011 23:01:52

OOPS - account...where is the spellcheck???

Diane McLaughlin
6/1/2011 23:17:53

delicious user name no1choc

Kevin Wickersham
6/1/2011 23:19:21

After reading the article, a few things came in to perspective in regard to how the process of writing has changed with the times. When I first began to write, it was a very mechanical and methodical process. Steps had to be followed in a very specific order. It was always done in pencil because the first copy was your sloppy copy which would later be edited by the teacher. Once I received my copy back bludgeoned in red ink I began my second rough draft. After it received several more criticisms in red, I was then ready to write my final copy in blue or black ink. After what seemed like an eternity, I then received my paper back with its final grade. Now, for me, writing has become a much more informal process where I do it on the computer and then kind of write and edit at the same time. It is easier and far less intimidating. I think it affords the writer a little more freedom which in turn enhances creativity and individuality.

Jennifer WIckersham
6/1/2011 23:20:07

As I read the article, I was amazed at how much my writing HAS changed throughout my life. As child of the 70s and 80s, I was taught to write in a very succinct, precise manner. The old use a pen and pencil, 3-4 sentences per paragraph, 5 paragraphs in an essay, process, process, process format was drilled into my head. Writing was for one purpose – to pleased the teacher and accomplish a task. Casual, informal writing was not part of my life, except for passing notes to friends in class. With the introduction of technology and more informal settings, such as learning communities, websites, blogs, email, etc. I find that I continue to write but to a different audience. I write to share with a larger community rather than just “my teacher.” As far as process, I tend to type, and edit as I go. I hardly ever use paper and pencil anymore.

Diane mclaughlin
6/2/2011 00:23:10

After reading the articles and blogs I am again reminded of the importance of writing across the curriculum.
In response to the prompt, writing has become more laborious for me as I have great difficulty composing on the computer as opposed to paper and pencil in part due to the way I learned to write (outlines etc. without technology). However, I think a factor not mentioned in the articles is that my peers are judging me by my writings whether it be be in this blog or in social networking. With that in mind, as educators we need to have students use writing from the time they are learning to read to become as comfortable with it as possible and use it whenever possible in our curriculum.

Karen Harrigton
6/2/2011 09:38:55

Has my writing changed over the years? Boy has it ever. I remember typing my first term paper in high school. If you made one mistake it meant completely retyping it. I think it made much more cautious in my prewriting, making sure everything was correct before committing it to the typewriter and therefore I feel I was less creative in my writing. Word processors were a Godsend. I find that now, because I can go back and change anything that I revise more and rethink what I have written. One way in which I refuse to change is in texting. I know, it’s crazy but I still spell everything out and use correct grammar even when texting.

Daina Blackstone
6/20/2011 05:02:24

Intro Activity

I have vivid memories of writing in high school. First of all, my 9th and 10th grade English teacher’s name was Mrs. Rote. Get it? This is not a joke. I remember sitting at desks in rows with no talking allowed, listening for 45 minutes straight with no interaction, copying notes from an overhead projector, my head repeatedly dropping down towards the desk as I kept nodding off. By the end of class, the only thing I could remember was nothing.
When it came to writing in Mrs. Rote’s class, I remember my mom being very frustrated. After 9th grade, Mrs. Rote decided that all papers had to be typed. This may sound normal, but back then personal computers cost ten thousand dollars. My mom complained about having to pull out her manual typewriter that she had from college. After I struggled with typing for an hour or so, my mom would take over and finish the work for me.
Out of all of the literature that Mrs. Rote taught, the only story that I remember was told by my friend’s mother when we were at his house working on English homework. She told us that when Ryan was four years old they lived in Morocco. Ryan crawled on top of the refrigerator and ate some cannabis infused brownies. Then Ryan’s parents had to take him to the hospital and they were really embarrassed. I can remember this but not anything else about what we actually learned in English class.
I guess Mrs. Rote did something right, because I managed to test out of taking two semesters of English in college. By this time, I had access to computers so writing for Business English, World History, or Intermediate French was a completely different game. Writing became more fun and fluid when I had the right tools and a specific purpose.

My delicious user name is DainaBlackstone.


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