The Jigsaw Puzzle, the Kangaroo Signpost, and the Blind Squirrel

First-year writers at the University of Mississippi compose reflective ePortfolios in which they examine their writing practices throughout the year.  Work on the ePortfolios begins in the first week of the semester.  In my classes, students begin their ePortfolios with a writer’s statement called “Me as a Writer.”  They write a paragraph describing how they see themselves as writers, upload […]

The First Week of School

A new semester has just begun, and I once again find myself struggling to introduce a new group of first-year students to college writing.  This time, I tried to think of a new way to help them understand the necessity of active engagement in a writing class by stressing the difference between content classes and skill classes.  I explained to […]

New Year, New Opportunities

Each new school year brings the excitement of new students, new goals, and new opportunities. Each new year, teachers eagerly await their students’ return, thrilled to have the chance to try a new strategy or new approach. Each new year, teachers have the hope that this will be the year more students are inspired to write. On the other hand, […]

Building Blocks

Through my years as an educator I have worked in high school classrooms with small and large groups of freshmen and seniors, in the college environment with freshmen, as well as one on one with under-prepared college students. Today I’d like to focus on my experience with under-prepared students and the building blocks to success. There are many reasons as […]

The development of a writing curriculum at Lamar School

Four years ago at Lamar School in Meridian, we began developing a writing program.  It has evolved and is continuing to evolve as, through trial and error, we find what works best for our teachers and students.  Initially, we adopted the Institute for Excellence in Writing program at the elementary and middle school.  The IEW structure contains nine units and […]