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Writing Matters
About writing for school. . . and success
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What Tumblr Taught Me About Writing - Publishers Weekly (blog)

What Tumblr Taught Me About Writing - Publishers Weekly (blog) | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
What Tumblr Taught Me About Writing
Publishers Weekly (blog)
I was teaching a ninth-grade humanities class in a New York City public school last year when I was accepted into two M.F.A. programs for fiction writing.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

It's about the audience. It's about the writing.

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Neil Gaiman: Let children read the books they love

Neil Gaiman: Let children read the books they love | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Author says physical books are here to stay during keynote speech on what he sees as future of books, reading and libraries
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Writers write because they need to as much as because they want to. Authors like Neil Gaiman create remarkable worlds and have what some might consider unusual perspectives on the world in which they live. Writers are aware of their readers--as should always be the case. The more we know what our readers like about our writing, the better able we are to write for them.

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Sarah McElrath's curator insight, October 25, 2013 8:46 AM

As a librarian, I so agree with this. I've seen very well-meaning teachers make reading into nothing but a chore. Here's hoping people get Gaiman's message.

Katie Davis's curator insight, November 26, 2013 3:37 PM

And then there is Neil... 

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To Establish a Writing Routine or Not, That is the Question | Beyond The Margins

To Establish a Writing Routine or Not, That is the Question | Beyond The Margins | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Guest post by Charles Garabedian I usually take my writing projects with me when I travel, like the time last spring when I stuffed a carry-on with my manuscript and flew to Durham, North Carolina in time for a family wedding.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Most professionals establish a routine for writing. It is, after all, their business, the way they make their livings. What others might take away from the idea of a routine for writing is that having a personal process for writing can make the writing experience more focused.

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International Literacy Day

International Literacy Day | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
International Literacy Day
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

If you know how to read and write, thank a teacher.


If you know how to read critically and write well, preferably with well-researched and carefully analyzed evidence,, thank a teacher.

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Teaching spelling and grammar is still vital in a technology-driven classroom - The Guardian

Teaching spelling and grammar is still vital in a technology-driven classroom - The Guardian | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
The Guardian Teaching spelling and grammar is still vital in a technology-driven classroom The Guardian In a recent article for The Telegraph, Sugata Mitra, professor of educational technology at Newcastle University, claimed that in today's...
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

This reinforces my position that many students are comfortable with technology which is NOT the same as being savvy or knowledgeable about technology.

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Battle Of The Brands: Companies With The Best Grammar Win

Battle Of The Brands: Companies With The Best Grammar Win | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Ad image courtesy of "Coke vs Pepsi" Facebook.com I’ve talked about the evidence that good grammar increases your income. Rob Asghar has identified the grammar felonies that could actually prevent you from getting a job.
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allAfrica.com: Nigeria: Writing and Grammar in the Age of Social Media (Page 1 of 2)

allAfrica.com: Nigeria: Writing and Grammar in the Age of Social Media (Page 1 of 2) | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
allAfrica: African news and information for a global audience
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Heads up, people: writing is a fact of life. It's not about being in an English (or language of your choice) class. It is, however, about being literate, which is the ability to read and write. Math literacy, science literacy, social science literacy, and more.


I did a session on literacy not too long ago. An hour wasn't nearly long enough to talk about literacy across a curriculum but, for some, it was a start as they begin to think differently, I hope, about what literacy looks like and sounds like in the classroom. Let me just say this: it's different from what we're used to, but not so different around the world.

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Haiku: Poetry Metagenics at the Pulitzer Center | Pulitzer Center

Haiku: Poetry Metagenics at the Pulitzer Center | Pulitzer Center | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

An interesting perspective on the why of haiku and the power that can be expressed in those 17 syllables.

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12 Types of Blog Posts You Need to Stop Writing

12 Types of Blog Posts You Need to Stop Writing | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Blog post at New Media Expo Blog :
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

These are good suggestions. Worth reading and worth a bit of time in self-examination. I can be snarky, and not just in my blog posts. The more I work with Common Core and think about the instructional shifts and their inherent value, the more I think about how those very same shifts could have value elsewhere. Such as writing with evidence. Yep, it's important to back up one's position with evidence and to learn how to do that well, objectively, and effectively. Your readers will trust you and value your words even more.

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5 ways to improve your writing skills — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax...

5 ways to improve your writing skills — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax... | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Like it or not, people judge you by how you write. Strong writing skills will help you get noticed, earn your colleagues’ trust and move you up in your career, says author and writing coach Roger C.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

First up? Audience. Yep, yep, yep.

Edit & revise. YES!!!!

Read different genres and styles. Borrow liberally. but make it your own.

If you can, find a place and establish a routine and process. If not, write anyway.

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Sarah McElrath's curator insight, April 8, 2013 3:12 PM

Love that this talks about how becoming better at writing is for everyone--not just "writers."

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5 Ways To Try A New Writing Style

5 Ways To Try A New Writing Style | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
by Writer's Relief staff: As writers, most of us would admit to sometimes stifling our own potential because we’re afraid to fail at something new.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

There are ways to apply most if not all of these to non-fiction writing. POV, for example, is thinking about the audience experience. It's important for every writer to think the audience and make a choice about POV, as well as style, tone, etc.


I had my freshman writing students do a variation of an activity I found in a book, "Writerly Kleptomania" was the activity, I think. The idea was to select three types of writing in a style different from one's own and try to mimic it. As a result, these young writers could begin to get a sense of what worked for them, but also discover writing techniques and approaches they might want to adopt and adapt. Keepin' fresh; keepin' it real. ;)

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Teaching Writing Through Personal Reflection: Bad Idea - The Conversation - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Teaching Writing Through Personal Reflection: Bad Idea - The Conversation - The Chronicle of Higher Education | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

I would tell my freshman writing students that I didn't care what they felt, but I did care what they think and what they believe. While personal reflection papers don't get students far in college, clear and objective reflection is an important skill. Another thing I would tell my students is that is it's really important to know why they believe what they believe. I think that's applicable to one's personal and one's professional life. I need to be able to explain to my boss why I believe a decision is a good one or a bad one, and that requires reflection. Objective reflection, but also self-awareness to recognize my own biases. So let's not write off (sorry) personal reflection entirely, but let's use the approach of reflection wisely and with better intention.

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White Paper: 7 Classroom Routines that Promote Content Literacy Skills > Eye On Education

White Paper: 7 Classroom Routines that Promote Content Literacy Skills > Eye On Education | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Everyone knows the story of the young man carrying a violin case, walking down the street in Manhattan. He stops a fellow pedestrian and politely as...
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The History of the English Language, Animated

The History of the English Language, Animated | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
"The Sun never sets on the English language."

The history of language, that peculiar human faculty that Darwin believed was half art and
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Yes, words matter, too.

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How To Write Controversial Topics In A Responsible Fashion

How To Write Controversial Topics In A Responsible Fashion | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
When giving advice to new bloggers as to what kind of content grabs the most readers, the most comments, and the most shares on social media, most elder statesmen of the blogging community will say that controversy sells.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Writing about controversy is hard. Those who are attempting to report on controversy need to be objective. Objectivity can be difficult to manage, especially with controversial topics because controversial topics invite, well, controversy--argument, dissent, etc.

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Sarah McElrath's curator insight, October 25, 2013 8:37 AM

Looks at blogging --but could be used for debate and other forms of writing/presenting.

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The No. 1 rule for good business writing? Get to the point

The No. 1 rule for good business writing? Get to the point | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Creating a key message and backing it up in a succinct, organized fashion will help your documents get their job done
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More Core ELA: Setting up the Conditions for Excellence in Writing Instruction

More Core ELA: Setting up the Conditions for Excellence in Writing Instruction | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

There is no one way to teach writing. Teachers need to establish "clear criteria for excellence, and have students write and write and write until they find their voices and effectively communicate." Yes, have students write and write and write. Not just essays, but dialogues, reviews, proposals. And please, please, please throw out page and word counts!!

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The 10 best writing apps on the iPad

The 10 best writing apps on the iPad | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
As we gradually get faster at typing on touchscreens, extended writing sessions on the iPad have become much more viable. Meanwhile, developers of writing apps have made significant ...
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Why You Need To Write For Your Audience, Not The Grammar Police

Why You Need To Write For Your Audience, Not The Grammar Police | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
The great David Ogilvy once said: “I don’t know the rules of grammar… If you’re trying to persuade people to do something, or buy something, it seems to me you should use their language, the language they use every day, the...
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

And there you have it.

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30 Invaluable Pieces Of Writing Advice

30 Invaluable Pieces Of Writing Advice | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
In the late 1950s, Jack Kerouac typed out a list of thirty points describing his writing practice in a piece titled "Belief and Technique for Modern Prose: List of Essentials."
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Writing is work. And it has to flow from somewhere deep inside. Isaac Asimov once said, "Writing, to me, is simply thinking through my fingers." Write on.

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Using Design Thinking to Leave No Right Brain Behind in the Classroom | Education on GOOD

Using Design Thinking to Leave No Right Brain Behind in the Classroom | Education on GOOD | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Something cool is brewing in Los Angeles that could create a lasting, global effect on creativity in education.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

There's some really cool potential here! This is a project that's going to be worth watching to understand how it develops and its results, and then how to make it happen locally.

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Brick by Brick: My Word Wall Is Blooming

Brick by Brick: My Word Wall Is Blooming | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

One of my favorite books about writing is Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird. I used some of the "strategies" in my writing classes. The upshot is that learning is brick by brick, bird by bird, word by word. I love the idea of this word wall and think more teachers in more content areas should adapt the idea of a word wall to teach writing. There is no one "right" way to do a word (or phrase or question stem or poetry or. . . ) wall, but lots and lots of possibilities for creativity, fun, and, yes, learning.

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The Philosophy of Style: Herbert Spencer on the Economy of Attention and the Ideal Writer (1852)

The Philosophy of Style: Herbert Spencer on the Economy of Attention and the Ideal Writer (1852) | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
"To have a specific style is to be poor in speech."

Today's abundance of advice on the art and craft of writing makes the phenomenon appe
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

This particular post is basically a collection of quotes from Spencer, but after the end of the article are some links to very thought provoking observations about writing by other writers. Those are worth the Spencerian slog.

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Stolen Moments: 10 Ways to Steal Writing Time

Stolen Moments:  10 Ways to Steal Writing Time | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Writers are given 8,736 hours a year to write. Making the most out of writing time requires flexibility, determination, ingenuity and grit.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Some interesting notes/insights, and I'd like to point out the reference to "duck tape." For those of you who think the writer might be incorrect, hold on to your judgmental selves. The truly first was, in fact, "duck tape" using cotton duck cloth, a heavy cotton fabric. And Duck Tape is a brand name of all kinds of stuff to keep stuff together or just plain ol' decorate. http://duckbrand.com/

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William Faulkner Explains Why Writing is Best Left to Scoundrels … Preferably Living in Brothels (1956)

William Faulkner Explains Why Writing is Best Left to Scoundrels … Preferably Living in Brothels (1956) | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Ask writers for writing advice, and they'll usually offer up some very practical tips. A few examples:

Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for (Kurt Vonnegut).
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Okay, so perhaps not great advice appropriate for every aspiring writer, but there are some interesting, entertaining, and even useful nuggets.


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