Social Class Reproduction

Four Rules for Teaching Writing:
Image result for image: joy of writing
Always give writing assignments that

1. you will enjoy reading;
2. students will enjoy writing;
3. students will enjoy reading what others in the class have written
4. you will enjoy writing.

If any one of these conditions were not true, then it probably wasn't a very good assignment.

Advice I give to my students: When your words surprise you, you know you are writing.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Having Fun Again

I'm just saying: what would happen if writing teachers at all levels (think Lucy Calkins) made as their primary objective having fun with writing (writing and reading)--and note (as you will if you read my students' writing) some of this can be hard fun. #ipeckham #personalwriting #funwriting


  1. Agreed, yet school learning outcomes tend to get in the way. Would be interesting to design a hypothetical syllabus similar to some Phys Ed course where everything was gamed about collaboration, team competition, getting some fresh air.

  2. Thanks, Bruce, for your comment. Yes--they get in the way. And the bad thing--the degree to which we have to pay attention to outcomes that we contest depends on our professional status. The other point is that like good citizens, we need to protest counterproductive outcomes & find ways to change them.

  3. Thanks for that response, Irvin. As a new assistant prof in Texas, I'm seeing learning outcomes politicized by politicians, administrators long out of the classroom, and of course well-intentioned professors interested in maintaining their territory in the writing classroom without seeing how the field is changing.

    And so the most I can protest, I feel, is by using the small step approach: trying something, showing that it works (and sometimes why it doesn't work), showing enthusiasm for change, evangelizing with positive examples from the field, and hoping for slow, persistent progress. Otherwise, I'll keep my head low until that professional status increases.

  4. :-). But I will say, Bruce, that by keeping your head low, you can often get away with better teaching than one would think.