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up to enabling students to write effective essays.
Undoubtedly, the use of traditional procedures, such as a predictable writing routine where planning and revising are expected and reinforced (see Table 1 for other examples), increases the likelihood that students with LD will engage in these processes when writing. Nevertheless, many of these children benefit from more extended and explicit instruction in both planning and revising strategies (Englert, Raphael, Anderson, Anthony, Stevens, & Fear, 199 1; Graham & Harris, 1996; Harris & Graham, 1999; Wong, 1997). For example, in our own research (Graham, Harris, MacArthur, & Schwartz, 1991b; Harris & Graham, 1996), we have successfully taught students with LD to use the same kinds of planning and revising strategies that more skilled writers use when they compose. With this approach (i.e., Self-Regulated Strategy Development), the teacher first models how to use the target planning or revising strategy and then provides students with as much support as needed as they move towards independent use of the strategy. Support ranges from the teacher working as a partner in applying the strategy to peers helping each other apply the strategy to simple reminders to use part or all of the strategy. Students also learn any background knowledge needed to apply the strategy, develop a thorough understanding of how the strategy can support their writing, and systematically investigate where and how to apply the strategy beyond the initial learning situation (i.e., maintenance and generalization). Learning and application of the strategy is further supported through the use of self-instructions, goal setting, self-monitoring, and self-evaluation. To illustrate, children often develop and use a specific self-statement for managing some aspect of their behavior (e.g., impulsiveness) that interferes with using the strategy; they are encouraged to evaluate how the strategy helped them improve their writing; and they set goals for applying the strategy in new situations. Throughout instruction, the importance of effort and students' role as collaborators in the learning processes is stressed. Finally, instruction is criterion-based, as students do not move to later stages of instruction (e.g., from supported use to independent use of the strategy) until they have met at least initial criteria for doing so.
Other studies support teaching students specific procedures for diagnosing and correcting their own writing problems. In studies of procedural facilitation, students were taught to evaluate their writing using question cards that helped them compare their writing to their original purpose, to diagnose any problems, and to operate to fix the problems to match their purpose (Bereiter and Scardamalia, 1987). Researchers have also successfully used cognitive strategy instruction and to teach struggling writers procedures for planning and reviewing their writing (Harris and Graham, 1992).
Teaching Students to Write Effective Introductions
However, the findings from the study by Englert and her associates (Englert et al., 1995) reviewed earlier, demonstrated that teachers are not powerless-children with special needs, including those with LD, can be taught to write. A critical element in designing a successful writing program for these students is recognizing that they are capable. This belief was evident in an interview with a first grade teacher who had been identified by her principal as an outstanding literacy instructor. She indicated that she approached each child as a competent learner-one who can learn to work productively and independently in the classroom. Another essential ingredient was articulated by a second outstanding literacy teacher. He indicated that the weaker students in his classroom are never shown disrespect. Instead, he constantly seeks to support and maintain these students' participation in class without stigmatizing them. For example, he has made sitting next to him a special honor in his class, so when he sits next to weaker students to support them, no stigma is attached to time spent interacting with the student. We believe that it is also important to ignore negative expectations (e.g., "Children with LD cannot learn to write well"); set high but realistic expectations for each child's writing performance; help students develop an "I can" attitude; monitor and improve the quality of classroom interactions for struggling writers; plan writing lessons so that all children can accomplish tasks successfully; and build a positive relationship with each child, accepting them as individuals and showing enthusiasm for their interests.
Currently, spelling, planning, and revising are the areas we know most about tailoring writing instruction to meet the needs of students with LD. According to Graham (1999), an effective spelling program for students with LD includes 4 components. One, students with LD need to be taught how to spell words they commonly use when writing. Validated procedures for teaching spelling vocabulary to these students are summarized in Table 2. Two, students with LD need to learn how to generate plausible spellings for unknown words. Teachers can facilitate the development of this skill through instruction in phonological awareness (see O'Connor, Notari-Syverson, & Vadasy, 1998; Troia, Roth, & Graham, 1998), the alphabetic principle (i.e., teaching phoneme-grapheme associations, spelling patterns, spelling rules, and so forth), dictionary skills, and strategies for "figuring-out" unknown spellings, such as spelling by analogy (see Englert, Hiebert, & Stewart, 1985). Three, students with LD need to know how to check and correct any misspellings that occur. This includes learning to use spell checkers and other aides, such as a dictionary, soliciting editing assistance from others, and applying strategies such as reading text aloud to locate spelling miscues. Four, students with LD need to develop a desire to spell words correctly. Teachers can promote this inclination by modeling correct spelling when writing in class and providing plenty of opportunities for students to share, display, and publish their writing (to promote attention to correct spelling in practical and social situations).
Tell your students how to conclude their essays appropriately
These preliminary results are confirmed by earlier research showing that teaching writing scales such as the Features of Effective Writing or the Six Traits improves the quality of students’ writing. In his meta-analysis of twenty-five years of writing research, George Hillocks (1986) concluded that writing scales were the most effective way to improve student writing.
My return to the classroom: As of 2011, I am back among the youthful minds of Northern Nevada; I have my very own batch of student writers again, which is so very wonderful. In truth, it has been a stressful-yet-thrilling experience to learn how to use my "teacher legs" again, if I can force a nautical metaphor into my Nevada-desert experience. My writer's workshop is already thriving (amazing how fast that set of skills comes back to you!), and I have also established a reading workshop for the very first time; I will be posting new materials from this new-to-me structure as my year progresses. I am teaching sixth, seventh, and eighth graders, all of whom I share with the same math, science, and social studies teacher at the middle school where we have set-up shop. I have never "teamed" before, and these three incredible teachers I share my students with are all so willing to use the writing across the curriculum methods suggested in Common Core State Standards. In the past, this website had been focused on the teachers/workshops I created for my fellow Nevada educators, but I have now begun the transformation to focus my website on my classroom, a high-functioning environment where students are allowed to explore themselves as readers and writers.
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10/21/2016 · How to Teach Essay Writing
In its most basic form a teacher's primary purpose is to provide direction, motivation and knowledge to students ( , ), however the effectiveness of a teacher should not be determined by their ability to impart knowledge alone, the scope in which they achieve this is also of immen...
Teaching Writing | Time4Writing
North Carolina’s model of five Features of Effective Writing is similar to another model, the , on which there has been significant recent . Several studies show that the quality of writing improves when students are taught to use this model to evaluate their writing. In a study in Oregon, three fifth-grade classrooms where teachers taught the Six Traits as part of the writing process were compared to three classrooms in which students learned only the process. Students in the Six Traits classrooms scored higher on the state writing assessment than students in the process-only classrooms.
Essay Writing: The Basics | UNSW Current Students
Research also shows the importance of integrating direct instruction into the writing process. Studies of classroom instructional modes have revealed that classrooms using an “environmental” mode of instruction, in which direct instruction was integrated into the writing process, were much more effective than classrooms that used the writing process alone. Unlike the “natural process” classrooms, which were characterized by low teacher input (a lack of direct instruction and guidance) and high student input, environmental classrooms were characterized by high input from both teachers and students, including both direct instruction and guided practice in small groups. The least effective classrooms, characterized by high teacher input and low student input, focused on teaching traditional grammar and provided students with few opportunities to evaluate or revise their own writing.
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I invite you to visit me here often this school year on-line...and to see how one single teacher--with over twenty-five years invested in his career--can continually find ways to improve some remarkable lessons and units to be even better than they were. The beauty of teaching writing, to me, is that--like a piece of writing you are working on and really think has potential--a well-crafted writing lesson is NEVER complete. With each re-visit, it can become better, stronger, more creative, and can go to deeper places in my students' amazing brains. At my website, I honor this idea of ALWAYS revising your favorite lessons that invite students to WRITE.
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