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ERIC Number: ED019262
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1967-Nov
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
TEACHING CHILDREN'S WRITING IN ENGLAND.
DIXON, JOHN
PREPARING CHILDREN TO WRITE BY TAKING THEM OUT OF THE CLASSROOM TO SHARE EXPERIENCES IS A RESPECTED PRACTICE IN SOME ENGLISH PRIMARY SCHOOLS. SINCE A TEACHER CANNOT PREDICT WITH CERTAINTY WHEN A CHILD WILL BE READY FOR WRITTEN EXPRESSION, HE MUST REPEATEDLY ENCOURAGE THE CHILD TO SHARE, TO TALK OVER, AND LATER--WHEN THE MOMENT OF EXPRESSION ARRIVES--TO DRAW, PAINT, WORK WITH MATERIALS, OR WRITE. SUCH PRELIMINARIES ARE IMPORTANT BECAUSE (1) WRITING IS ONLY ONE SEGMENT OF NUMEROUS INTEGRATED ACTIVITIES IN THE SCHOOLS, (2) SPOKEN, NOT WRITTEN, LANGUAGE GIVES CHILDREN THEIR FIRST OPPORTUNITIES TO COMPARE LANGUAGE WITH EXPERIENCE, AND (3) THE LONELY ACT OF WRITING CAN BE FACED ONLY WHEN CHILDREN HAVE BUILT UP THE EXPECTATION OF AN INTERESTED, SYMPATHETIC LISTENER. AT THE CHILD'S INITIAL STAGE OF UTILIZING WRITTEN EXPRESSION, WRITING IS VERY MUCH A MATRIX OF INTERWOVEN FEELINGS, IMPRESSIONS, OBSERVATIONS, AND THOUGHTS. INSTEAD OF ENCOURAGING CHILDREN TO DISTINGUISH UTILITARIAN FROM IMAGINATIVE USES OF LANGUAGE, THEY SHOULD BE LED TO RECOGNIZE THE VALUE OF WRITING BOTH AS A MEDIUM AND AS A TOOL OF EXPRESSION, IN THAT (1) BEING PERMANENT, IT CAN HELP ONE COLLECT A STORE OF THINGS WORTH REMEMBERING, (2) BEING SLOWER THAN TALKING, IT ENCOURAGES ONE TO REFLECT, PONDER, AND MAKE DISCOVERIES ABOUT EXPERIENCE, AND (3) BEING PRIVATE, IT ENHANCES ONE'S OPPORTUNITIES TO EXPERIMENT WITH LANGUAGE. (THIS PAPER WAS PRESENTED AT THE 1967 NCTE ANNUAL CONVENTION.) (RD)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Council of Teachers of English, Champaign, IL.
Identifiers: ENGLAND