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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Entry #12

Now that my reading and writing blog has come to an end, I am taking a step back to see what I have learned from this experience.  I am using the student learning outcomes in the first page of our syllabus.  I have clearly learned about the variety of genres that readers and writers use to communicate.  As I read the chapters, trade books, and my classmate’s blog and listened to my classmates presentations, I used my blog to discuss and come to terms with the different genres I have learned about.  I defiantly learned a lot about the different genres from this course and have deepened my understanding of the genre as a whole.  I have also learned how to teach the various genres and use different genre texts effectively.  I have also used my blog to discuss the importance of purpose and audience as discussed in outcome 2.  I especially learned about this as I completed my genre pieces project.  I really had to think about my pieces and how I would covey my message to different audiences thought personal or rhetorical voice.  I used my blog as a means to reflect on my genre pieces how they were coming along, and what I needed to change.  I have learned slowly about the purpose, audience, and voice of each piece.  Learning outcome three I had to think more about.  The historical and contemporary theoretical models of reading and writing need to be mixed with new literacy theories.  I think that I express this thought my blog entries and I synthesize my learning.  I have used traditional models such as letter writing and also incorporated new literacies such as emails, in my genre presentation.  I have discussed this in my blog.  I have also discussed a variety of other traditional literature and new literacies throughout my blog posts.
Outcome number 4 discusses the relationship between the writing and reading processes.  I have discussed this in my blog entries as I discuss writer’s workshop and different genres.  Reading and writing are harder to separate than speak of in conjunction, and you can see that I link them in my blog entries.  Learning outcome number 5 is defiantly achieved as I wrote my blog entries.  I spent a lot of time thinking about thinking about writing proficiency and reading comprehension as I thought what to write.  My blog was a place that was designated for this reason.  I used this digital space to think about my learning in a metacognitive way and use reflection to grow and learn.  I have also thought about different assignments that are developmentally appropriate.  I have also learned a lot about how to incorporate digital reading and writing assignments in the classroom.  I have discussed this in blog entry 2.  This is something that I learned a lot about in this course.  Not only did I have the chance to learn about these new literacies, I had the opportunity to practice and use them.  Lastly, I have learned how to assess and evaluate students writing and reading proficiency.  This was discussed in blog entries 5 and 6.  This is something that I never felt very comfortable doing.  The readings from this course and my experiences in class have equipped me with strategies to prepare me to assess reading and writing effectively and confidently.  Looking back on my blog, it is clear that I have learned a lot from engaging in my blog writing, and this course.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Entry #11

            Before taking this class I knew the basics about the different literary genres we have discussed in this class.  However, after my readings and listening to my peers presentations I am much more knowledgeable on the subject.  At the beginning of this class I knew that I had a lot to learn about the specific features of each genre and how to teach it.  The genre that I felt the most comfortable with was letters and that is what I chose for my genre presentation.  While I knew most of the text features of this genre, like the format of personal and business letters, I learned great tips on how to effectively teach this genre to students.  I learned that using real letters as examples, and having students write letters that will really be sent, helps them to see the relevancy of letter writing and makes the experience more authentic.
            Another genre that I felt pretty comfortable with was journals.  However, after reading Tompkins and attending Dr. Jones’ presentation I was reminded of the many different formats of journals.  I was familiar with simulated journals, reading logs, dialogue journals, and personal journals prior to this presentation.  However, I now know what a double journal entry was or how to use it in the classroom.  This genre that I thought I knew a lot about, was enriched and I know a lot more about it now.
            I also learned a lot about the persuasive genre.  While most of what I learned, I already knew but had just forgotten.  Going into the presentation and readings I thought that persuasive writing was just essays.  But after the presentations I realized that it was a lot more than that.  I learned some of the ways to persuade, different parts of a persuasive essay, and features of persuasive writing such as double speak and propaganda.  I also found the graphic organizer they provided very helpful, and I could see myself using it to teach persuasive writing to students.  This was the genre that I learned the most about and feel much more comfortable with it.
            The last genre that I have learned about was the expository genre.  I knew more about this genre and have used it as a teaching tool in the past.  I knew the different text structures and features, such as table of contents, headings, and maps.  I have learned more about this genre in the past few years, as the new standards require much more use of expository texts, even with young children.
            I am so glad to have learned so much about the different genres in this class.  I feel much more able to teach each genre, and more educated on them myself.  I am eager to learn about the poetry, narrative and biographical, and descriptive genres in the next few weeks.  I am also excited to present my genre to the class!