ERIC Number: ED199744
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Oct
Integrating Writing Into the Elementary Language Arts Curriculum: Let's Put Writing In Its Place.
Odum, Helen P.
Elementary school teachers acknowledge the need for better writing instruction, but seldom have time for it within their already crowded curricula. Writing instruction suffers from placing skills development before writing activities, from emphasis on reading, and because many teachers are not well prepared to teach writing. A low priority is given to writing at the college level, and the time spent on writing instruction in high schools is only a fraction of that recommended by researchers. Teachers need to take advantage of the fact that children have a natural urge to write before they want to read. Since writing contributes to reading comprehension and helps to focus thinking skills, reading and writing should be taught in a way that highlights opportunities for observing the connections between oral and written language. Children who are used to writing for others can more easily achieve the necessary objectivity for reading works by others and the vocabulary building that results improves children's reading skills. Spelling is an aid to writing and has no use apart from writing, nor do isolated writing skills. Teachers should accept children's early misspellings in the same spirit that parents accept their early mispronunciation in oral language. Penmanship becomes more legible, and punctuation more consistent when these skills are taught in the context of the goal toward which they are directed. (An annotated bibliography of materials dealing with integrating writing in the elementary school curriculum is appended.) (HTH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers; Reference Materials - Bibliographies
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Virginia Association of Teachers of English (11th, Virginia Beach, VA, October 24-26, 1980).