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Gutzmer, Cara; Wilder, Phillip – Voices from the Middle, 2012
If we listen to them, the words of our students can provide a road map for instructional responses that meet their diverse literacy needs. In this article, Cara Gutzmer, a middle school literacy coach, and Phil Wilder, a teacher collaborator at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, discuss how a responsive teaching framework guided their…
Descriptors: Feedback (Response), Writing Processes, Poetry, Writing Improvement
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Rief, Linda – Voices from the Middle, 2006
Writing--and lots of it in all genres--is at the heart of the language arts curriculum and the skills of critical thinking that students need to develop to become prepared consumers and citizens. In this article, the author reflects on her growth as a writer and teacher, and offers an overview of what people know about writing, what they need to…
Descriptors: Writing Skills, Writing Processes, Writing Instruction, Writing Improvement
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Smith, Michael W.; Wilhelm, Jeff – Voices from the Middle, 2006
The authors offer research studies and other documented evidence that teaching grammar without a meaningful context does not improve student writing, largely because that approach does not address the root causes of errors. Several resources that support this position and offer more productive strategies are summarized, including the authors'…
Descriptors: Grammar, Writing Improvement, Writing Instruction, Error Patterns
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Patterson, Nancy – Voices from the Middle, 2006
Word processing continues to be the focus in many classrooms, although more and more teachers now ask students to publish on the Web, engage in e-mail conversations regarding their reading and writing, create slide presentations that represent their learning, post to blog sites, etc. And while there is a growing body of research that supports…
Descriptors: Internet, Computers, Word Processing, Computer Uses in Education
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Romano, Tom – Voices from the Middle, 2003
"Voice" is one of the least concrete elements of good writing, and yet it is also one of the most important. Helping students find a balance between the "gush" of ideas and words and the "long-thinking" of reflection and craft, Tom Romano leads students to allow themselves creative freedom while developing the patience to hone that first rush into…
Descriptors: Writing Instruction, Middle Schools, Middle School Students, Writing (Composition)
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Denyer, Jenny; LaFleur, Debra – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Describes some of what educators have learned about the complex task they ask students to tackle when they put them in peer groups to talk with each other about their writing. Analyses the work of one peer revision group and illustrates the complicated work that students can engage in as they struggle to justify their writerly decisions to their…
Descriptors: Group Discussion, Peer Groups, Revision (Written Composition), Secondary Education
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Jago, Carol – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Discusses the author's goal of helping students see how mistakes in their writing distract readers and how errors have influenced the grade. Recommends the careful use of the "red pen" noting that it is easy to forget its power. Suggests that teachers use this power to help students grow as writers. (SG)
Descriptors: Middle Schools, Student Attitudes, Writing Evaluation, Writing Improvement
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Patterson, Nancy – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Discusses how computer technology has brought with it a rethinking about how writing happens. Notes that research indicates that computers have a positive impact on student writing. Lists 15 web sites that may help teachers and students with the task of writing. (SG)
Descriptors: Computer Uses in Education, Secondary Education, Technological Advancement, Writing (Composition)
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Noden, Harry – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Argues that writers view grammar as a method of image construction. Describes image painting techniques from four grammatical perspectives: images of style, form, content, and convention. Describes how to teach these to eighth graders, offering numerous examples of class writing activities that use images as a doorway into the writer's art and…
Descriptors: Class Activities, English Instruction, Grade 8, Grammar
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Weaver, Constance; McNally, Carol; Moerman, Sharon – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Argues that, taught in the context of writing, grammar can enhance and improve students' writing. Offers classroom examples showing how: good preparation for writing fosters good grammar and detail; students can use grammatical and syntactic constructions used by professional authors as models for their own writing; and how to help students learn…
Descriptors: Editing, Elementary Secondary Education, English Instruction, Grammar
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Berger, Joan – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Describes a two-year grammar sequence that the author uses with the seventh- and eighth-grade reading and writing program, in an approach that combines grammar instruction with what students are reading and writing. Describes how systematic grammar and usage instruction is connected to what students are reading and writing. (SR)
Descriptors: English Instruction, Grammar, Integrated Activities, Language Arts
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Patterson, Nancy G. – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Summarizes five important studies that teachers should be aware of, which offer direction about how grammar should or should not be taught. Summarizes useful theory as well, concluding that the teaching of grammar in the language arts classroom must happen within the context of larger lessons and experiences with written and spoken language. (SR)
Descriptors: English Instruction, Grammar, Instructional Effectiveness, Integrated Activities
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Burke, Jim – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Discusses "textual intelligence": knowledge of how texts of all kinds work. Describes how the author uses grammar in his classroom to help students understand how to read and write better and how to think with greater clarity. Describes activities used before and after students read or write. Argues that grammar is a process that helps students…
Descriptors: Class Activities, English Instruction, Grammar, Language Arts
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Patterson, Nancy, Ed.; Pipkin, Gloria, Ed. – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Notes and discusses resources on the World Wide Web that deal with grammar and that may be useful to teachers. Lists traditional grammar websites, including online handbooks and style guides, but warns that the isolated teaching of grammar has little impact on student writing. Concludes that websites are needed that actually show teachers how to…
Descriptors: Elementary Secondary Education, English Instruction, Grammar, Language Arts
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Van Horn, Leigh, Ed. – Voices from the Middle, 2001
Discusses four books that will be useful to teachers who are rethinking how and why they teach grammar, and who want to connect and imbed the study of grammar in students' thinking and writing. (SR)
Descriptors: Class Activities, English Instruction, Grammar, Language Arts
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