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Home Professional Development Strategy Guides

Strategy Guide

Implementing the Writing Process

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Implementing the Writing Process

Grades K – 5
Publisher

International Reading Association

Strategy Guide Series Teaching Writing

See All Strategy Guides in this series 

 

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  • Published Comments

Lynn Meade

April 28, 2013

I teach third grade students in a Title I school. Many of my students struggle with writing. My question pertains to publishing. Should a student's published piece have no mistakes? I have taken the same approach with Writing as I do with Word Study,..staying within the zone of proximal development. I try to find 3 positives and 3 things that would make my students' writing better. In the end however, the published piece may still need more work. I don't want to overwhelm my students or get them hating writing. I've tried to locate statistics and words of wisdom from experts on this. Am I doing the right thing?

 

S Szabo

February 26, 2012

I do like this idea and have been implementing it for years. However, I take issue with the fact that in this particular strategy guide, revising and editing are combined when they really are two separate processes. Ideally they should not be taught together, but as two distinct applications. Many students (and teachers) get confused and think that these processes are one in the same. Typically, students end up only editing (checking for spelling, grammar, capitalization, and punctuation) instead of revising (reseeing their writing in terms of the clarity and organization of details, the structure of the writing, staying on topic and the appeal to a specific audience). The end result is that they copy the original draft without any real changes other than perhaps a word or two here and there. Editing is polishing for publication, but revising is where the real art of rewriting happens. As a middle school teacher, it is a battle that I constantly fight to help students understand the difference, and to recognize the value of revision. My hunch is this is in part why students view writing as a long, tedious process because they view it as redundant to write multiple drafts (without much change between the first and final), and consequently, they call the authenticity of writing into question. It would particularly help if they are taught the distinction between the two when they are first taught the writing process in elementary.

 

 

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