Turned off, checked out, and disengaged are ways Ralph Fletcher has described Boy Writers in his book Boy Writers: Reclaiming Their Voices.
Teachers are more than likely shaking their heads in agreement. Being a 7th/8th grade Language Arts Teacher, I have struggled with motivating boys who have the capacity to be brilliant writers.
Three years ago I infused a multi-genre project into my classroom in response to the need of a research paper being done by my 8th graders. Based on the boy response in my classroom, I knew I had to do something to get them engaged and excited about research.