Beyond the Stacks
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Resources & News for High School Educators from your teacher-librarian
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Why We Write: Scholastic Journalism Educators on the Importance of Modeling

Why We Write: Scholastic Journalism Educators on the Importance of Modeling | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
In a world that has more methods of communication than ever before it is important that we develop the necessary skills to effectively teach and model multiple forms of writing. By dedicating time to practice writing, we get better in the process.
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Assigning More Writing—With Less Grading

Assigning More Writing—With Less Grading | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Check out four best practices for teaching writing that can help you improve student learning without creating a mountain of grading work.
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Start a Reading Revolution: Flip Your Class With Blogs

Start a Reading Revolution: Flip Your Class With Blogs | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
By adding blogs to a flipped ELA class, teachers present literacy as a design challenge where words, images, and format serve to express students' ideas.
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The Five-Paragraph-Theme Blues and Writing for Real

The Five-Paragraph-Theme Blues and Writing for Real | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
by Michelle Tremmel Mr. C is the reason I became an English teacher.  Smart, charismatic, funny, and caring, he inspired students over a long career with a passion for and knowledge of American and British literature.  However, one feature of his teaching—the five-paragraph theme—was a mistake even in the hands of an otherwise brilliant teacher.…
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Pen and paper 'beats computers for retaining knowledge'

Pen and paper 'beats computers for retaining knowledge' | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Survey of students across 10 countries suggests handwriting and printed books have advantages over digital materials
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Developing Arguments via Social Media

Developing Arguments via Social Media | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Developing Arguments via Social Media

To build students’ mindfulness in social media spaces, we first need to help them see their participation in those networks as real reading and writing. The following activity, helps students to think about social media as a reading and writing space.
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My Anti-Five-Paragraph-Essay Five-Paragraph Essay - Literacy & NCTE

My Anti-Five-Paragraph-Essay Five-Paragraph Essay - Literacy & NCTE | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
In My Anti-Five-Paragraph-Essay Five-Paragraph Essay, Kim Zarins decimates the five-paragraph rule with humor and satire.
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Leonard Cohen on Moonlight, the Mystique of Creativity, His Influences, and Why He Loves It When People Cover His Songs

Leonard Cohen on Moonlight, the Mystique of Creativity, His Influences, and Why He Loves It When People Cover His Songs | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it

“If I knew where the good songs came from, I’d go there more often,” Leonard Cohen (September 21, 1934–November 7, 2016) famously quipped in a 1992 conversation about work ethic and the creative process. 

For this and other animated interviews, visit http://blankonblank.org/

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Bye-Bye, Cursive – Lingua Franca - Blogs - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Bye-Bye, Cursive – Lingua Franca - Blogs - The Chronicle of Higher Education | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Many of us suspect that our mode of thinking while writing changes depending on the technology we use. I initially began using a computer in the 1980s with precisely that trepidation. And many express anxiety about the disappearing art of handwriting — by which we mean, generally, cursive, the Palmer method that elementary students learned, by rote and painstakingly, for many decades in American schools.
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When Writers Write Books About How to Write Books

When Writers Write Books About How to Write Books | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Whether you're looking to ease into creative writing, think about literature in greater depth, or simply discover what it is writers think about writing, these books offer the pleasure of writers thinking about and doing what they do best.
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Ursula K. Le Guin : Late in the Day | Between The Covers

Ursula K. Le Guin : Late in the Day | Between The Covers | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Late in the Day, Ursula K. Le Guin’s new collection of poems (2010–2014) seeks meaning in an ever-connected world, giving voice to objects that may not speak a human language but communicate with us nevertheless through and about the seasonal rhythms of the earth, the minute and the vast, the ordinary and the mythological. As Le Guin herself states, “science explicates, poetry implicates.” Accordingly, this immersive, tender collection implicates us (in the best sense) in a subjectivity of everyday objects and occurrences. “There is no writer with an imagination as forceful and delicate as Ursula K. Le Guin’s.” —Grace Paley
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Creating a Writers' Workshop in a Secondary Classroom

Creating a Writers' Workshop in a Secondary Classroom | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
With the station rotation model, secondary students can focus on language arts skills such as analysis, structure, and academic writing while improving their overall writing quality.
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Don’t press send … The new rules for good writing in the 21st century

Don’t press send … The new rules for good writing in the 21st century | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
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Never Underestimate the Importance of Mini Lessons - Talks with Teachers

Never Underestimate the Importance of Mini Lessons - Talks with Teachers | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
I want to walk you through the steps of my most effective process to improve student writing on a large scale. Volume is important. Students need to write a lot. Conferences are great, too. They may be the best method to move one writer at a time, but when you have over 125 students it’s nearly impossible to confer with them for every piece of writing.
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Make Student Editing Meaningful | Language Arts Classroom

Make Student Editing Meaningful | Language Arts Classroom | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Too often, students click “spell check” and tell you that they are done. Editing entails much more.
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Is It Time To Go Back To Basics With Writing Instruction?

Is It Time To Go Back To Basics With Writing Instruction? | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
A writing program that many high school teachers thought would be far too easy has proven crucial to develop students' critical thinking and written expression
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Tuesdays with William Zinsser

Tuesdays with William Zinsser | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Mark Singer remembers the writer William Zinsser, who was his professor and whose book “On Writing Well” has sold more than a million and a half copies.
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Nurturing Intrinsic Motivation and Growth Mindset in Writing

To engage your students with their own development as writers, motivate them to care by showing your own interest and engagement with their process.
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We Know What Works in Teaching Composition

We Know What Works in Teaching Composition | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
Just because it doesn’t work in your classroom doesn’t mean it doesn’t work.
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No, We’re Not Teaching Composition ‘All Wrong’

No, We’re Not Teaching Composition ‘All Wrong’ | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
M y students can’t write a clear sentence to save their lives. It’s my job to help them change that.
I have taught writing for 10 years. Much like Joseph R. Teller, whose October essay criticizing how we teach composition riled many a writing instructor, I have "experimented with different assignments, activities, readings, [and] approaches to commenting on student work." But my results have been very different from his. Rather than seeing my students fail repeatedly, I’m seeing more and more of them succeed.

Their success may stem, in part, from a mantra I’ve taken to heart: If students consistently fail at something in my classroom, it’s not their fault. It’s mine.
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Working Titles of Famous Novels

Working Titles of Famous Novels | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
How ‘Trimalchio in West Egg’ became ‘The Great Gatsby’ and other famous name changes. “Working Titles of Famous Novels” is published by Carrie Mullins in Electric Literature
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Kurt Vonnegut’s Term Paper Assignment from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop Teaches You to Read Fiction Like a Writer

Kurt Vonnegut’s Term Paper Assignment from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop Teaches You to Read Fiction Like a Writer | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it

Image by Daniele Prati, via Flickr Commons
I wish I’d had a teacher who framed his or her assignments as letters...

Which is really just another way of saying I wish I’d been lucky enough to have taken a class with writers Kurt Vonnegut or Lynda Barry.
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Why I Threw Away My Rubrics

Why I Threw Away My Rubrics | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
I have a rubric that took over ten years of teaching college English to develop. Want to see it?
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Walter Benjamin’s 13 Oracular Writing Tips

Walter Benjamin’s 13 Oracular Writing Tips | Beyond the Stacks | Scoop.it
In Benjamin’s hands, that well-worn, well meaning, but often less than helpful genre becomes a series of oracular pronouncements that can seem, at first read, comical, superstitious, or puzzlingly idiosyncratic. But read them over a few times. Then read them again. Like all of his writing, Benjamin’s suggestions, some of which read like commandments, others like Nietzschean aphorisms, reveal their meanings slowly, illuminating the postures, attitudes, and physical and spiritual disciplines of writing in surprisingly humane and astute ways.
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