As a member of this Online Book Club, you are expected to post to the book blog at least once per week between now and July 11 -- that's six weeks. You should finish your book before then, and you will meet during the Institute in your groups to extend the discussion and plan how to present the book to the others in the Institute.

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Monday, June 6, 2016

The First Chapter

This is my first reading in my first grad school class!

Here are a few points that I constructed from the first chapter:

1. I loved the guidebook analogy.  This is how I have felt being a new-ish teacher, having faced two sets of curriculum at two very different schools: urban Detroit and suburban Canton.  How does one cram everything into the year, and have those units be memorable?  The quote from Gallager on page three reinforces this sentiment- that we have put an "unrealistic amount of material" into our lessons for the sake of "the test."  I am very interested in implementing more focused writing instruction into my literature classes.

2. I appreciated the quote from Applebee on page two, that included that students should be able to lead a "literate life," and that we must be able to equip our students for a range of writing demands.

3. I was interested in the "rituals" of the authors on page five.  I think this could be a very helpful and inspiring lessons for students in the beginning of the year.  What kinds of routines do they have when they write, or what kinds could they possibly develop.  This could be followed up at the end of the year.

4.  "Students cannot be standardized and turned our for distribution like cans of tomatoes" (8).  I think that this connects back to the "literature life" quote that I commented on in my second point.  If we think of our students' post-secondary life as the dish being prepared, we have so many different lives that will take so many different ingredients.If we do not expose students to the numerous, flavorful ingredients of writing, if we do not prepare their palates for the unexpected, how can a students know what they like?

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