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ERIC Number: ED175005
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-May
Pages: 8
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Crime on Our Minds: A Thematic Approach to Basic Writing.
Macheski, Cecilia
Using a single theme for a course in basic writing can be an effective and enjoyable way of teaching and learning. One college that developed such a program saw as the criteria for the course: learning grammar, writing at least eight in-class paragraphs of 300 words each in the quarter, attending the college's writing center and working with a tutor regularly, and passing departmental and university proficiency exams. Other major goals were for students to enjoy writing and to introduce content ideas. The thematic approach was an attempt to generate student interest in writing while focusing the course on basic writing problems. One section, employing a "detective story" theme, used two books: the writing text normally used in developmental writing courses and a paperback anthology of mini-mysteries. The pattern for each week's class work generally consisted of reading a chapter in the writing text and doing the exercises, discussing and reviewing the current grammatical concept, and outlining the next writing assignment. Assignments were related to the theme. It is possible to use such a thematic approach and to work on skills such as analytical writing, using conditional tenses, and practicing dictionary usage. Effective themes need to be applicable to student experience, touch a deep vein of interest, and be broad enough to allow complex strategies. (TJ)
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Canadian Council of Teachers of English (12th, Ottawa, Canada, May 8-11, 1979)