"1. Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.
2. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.
3. Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.
4. Every sentence must do one of two things-reveal character or advance the action.
5. Start as close to the end as possible.
6. Be a Sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them-in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
7. Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.
8. Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To hell with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages."
As a language learner, I was fortunate to have always learnt a language with the same script. I needed words and learnt them. I needed to communicate and so I practiced speaking. I was asked to write and I stumbled - for every language has its own peculiar writing culture.
It is with the thought of own students in mind that I include this post on writing. My students will be taking an international exam which will include writing. Their own native tongue uses a different script and English is not much used in their lives outside the classroom. Many succeed this exam. Some don't at first. Writing is no simple task in any language, let alone in a foreign language such as English.
Rachel Small, a 5th grade teacher in New Hamphsire, chronicles her struggles with mandated, rubric-driven, writing responses to fiction and how they contribute, in her view, to limiting (rather than expanding) students' writing.
She offers some alternatives that she believes open students up to writing more authentically, for a real audience. -JL
This post is about free Plagiarism tools that teachers can use to deter students from cheating on assignments, which raises the quality of work for your course. Instructors can see at a glance assignments that are original and ones that contain content copied from the Internet. I have assembled all these tools in a guide below for you to download and share.
“Common Core Standards: Interpret information presented visually, orally, or quantitatively (e.g., in charts, graphs, diagrams, time lines, animations, or interactive elements on Web pages) and explain how the information contributes to an understanding of the text in which it appears”
In celebration of April being National Poetry Month, I thought I would host a Linky Party. One of my most popular blog posts is What's in Your Writing Toolbelt? where I shared our 10 favorite publishing tools. I know how much we love learning something new that we can use in our own classrooms to support our students' learning. The most powerful way that we can learn is from one another. A Link Party is a great way we can share what we love with others in our PLN. Please share links to your favorite poetry website, resources, lessons, blogs or publishing tools that we can use to celebrate National Poetry Month with our learners.
Ever since the arrival of printing - thought to be the invention of the devil because it would put false opinions into people's minds - people have been arguing that new technology would have disastrous consequences for language. Scares accompanied the introduction of the telegraph, telephone, and broadcasting. But has there ever been a linguistic phenomenon that has aroused such curiosity, suspicion, fear, confusion, antagonism, fascination, excitement and enthusiasm all at once as texting?
At the School Library Journal Leadership Summit 2011, Pew Internet Director Lee Rainie looked at the “state of reading” in the digital age by going through (Check out this SlideShare presentation : Reading, Writing, & Research in the Digital ...)...
A Writer’s Notebook is an essential part of the Writing Workshop model in the upper grades. I also believe that every teacher of writing needs a writer’s notebook. Mem Fox says, “If you are not a writer, you will not understand the difficulties of writing. If you are not a writer, you will not know the fears and hopes of the writers you teach.” Below are just a few of the entries in my writer’s notebook. I will add student samples as soon as I can get them photographed and uploaded.
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