ERIC Number: ED257094
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Mar
Listening as an Act of Composing.
Ronald, Katharine; Roskelly, Hephzibah
The fact that students have not learned to listen may be the reason some of them cannot write. Listening is an active process requiring the same skills of prediction, hypothesizing, checking, revising, and generalization that reading and writing demand. The following three exercises were designed to make students conscious of themselves as active listeners who create the voices they hear as they read/listen and write/listen. In the first exercise students were asked to retell the story of "1984," and in the process learned some lessons about composing: (1) strategies of organization--beginnings, middles, ends--are not set by the form of the narrative itself, but developed by them as they retell the story; (2) general and specific ideas occur naturally as they both tell details of the story and attempt to move to the next point by generalizing; and (3) retellings of the same plot can take many forms. The second lesson was begun by an oral reading of Dorothy Parker's "You Were Perfectly Fine," and the students were to listen for details and generalities to use in retelling the story. In the third lesson the story of King Lear was told to the students, and they were asked to listen and retell it. Then they were asked to write a sentence or two that generalized what they felt about what the writer-voice seemed to tell them. The experiment taught students that listening is composing; what people listen for determines the form, style, and content of the responses they write. (EL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (36th, Minneapolis, MN, March 21-23, 1985).