Sunday, September 18, 2005

of a sunday

I'm thinking about pedagogy I'm thinking about writing, I'm thinking about reading about writing and teaching. It's a lot to process and swish around in a brain. To me, there are many different types of writing (obviously) and ways to go about doing the different writings. I don't usually write on-line, except for email. So this is a good brain activity, to think about writing in all its forms and write about it. But right now I am thinking about writing in a writing or composition classroom, which is very different from a poetry or a fiction writing classroom. Yes, there may be similarities, but for now I will assume the differences, which I'm not going to go into anyhow, maybe in the future...

Anyhow, in composition, or essay writing, I am reading about expressivist process pedagogy which is something I thought I had mostly stayed away from. I don't entirely understand all of the ins and outs of the theory, but the personal expression writing which seems to be at the heart of it makes me nervous. As a teacher of writing I am interested in getting students motivated to write and be invested in their writing. And in order to get them to do that, having them writing about their personal experiences seems like a great idea. But I don't want to spend all semester reading amateur personal narratives...not to put down amateur writers, but you have to be one heck of a teacher to get students to transcend the banal personal experience story and present something that then becomes more universal, that reaches out into the world and tells some larger story. In the world of Creative Non Fiction for example, personal essays begin with personal experience, but then they go somewhere, they diverge and become something grand or larger than the initial experience. This is not to say that all of these essays solve world problems but, even in the essays that focus on more mundane events and ideas, there is something more at state, there is some insight offered, there is something to hold onto as a reader learning and becoming invested...

So how then to bring more personal writing, student-centered writing into the classroom? I'll think about that more and keep reading.

1 comment:

majordude said...
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