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ERIC Number: EJ779054
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Nov
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 11
ISSN: ISSN-0094-0771
Teaching Content with the Help of Writing across the Curriculum
Peterson, Shelley Stagg
Middle School Journal (J1), v39 n2 p26-33 Nov 2007
Throughout the decades, writing has been recognized as a process that helps learners to think more deeply about ideas and information they encounter through reading, listening, viewing, and physically experiencing the world around them. "Discovery writing," the type of writing over which students have some control of the format, topic, purpose, and audience, leads to greater understanding of concepts across the middle school curriculum. "Staccato writing," the quick, short writing required when filling in blanks, copying notes from a blackboard, or providing short answers to questions, does not generate the same deep levels of understanding. Discovery writing requires greater concentrated attention to sorting through and making sense of ideas than staccato writing does. In this article, the author adds to the longstanding literature on writing across the curriculum by showing that content area classrooms are ideal places for helping students to develop as writers, as well as content learners. Writing is a natural and easy fit in content classes. As teachers teach writing, they help students to reinforce and build on their content understandings. As content concepts are taught, students will be creating pools of knowledge that they can draw upon when they write. Here, the author makes a case for teaching writing alongside content across the curriculum and then shows what planning and organizing the classroom to teach content concepts and writing might look like. (Contains 6 figures.)
National Middle School Association. 4151 Executive Parkway Suite 300, Westerville, OH 43081. Tel: 800-528-6672; Tel: 800-528-6672; Fax: 614-895-4750; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Middle Schools
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A