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Writing Conferences    Jane C 2006
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  • 1. Inquiry Project Summary Jane C. Question : How can I more effectively teach students how to apply what is said and shown in writing conferences to their writing?
  • 2. Background Information
    • Grade 2 English Language Learners writing group within main classroom
    • Mixed levels, including beginners.
    • modeled aspects of writer’s craft and process
    • goal was to show that good writers revise
    • small group and one to one writing conferences.
    • translator helped me to communicate grade level concepts about writer’s craft.
    • Students became more willing to revise but had lots of trouble knowing where and how to make revisions after conferences.
  • 3. Related Questions Arising from My Writers’ Workshop Practices:
    • 1. What long term effect does typing of (young) student drafts by the teacher have on students’ willingness to continue to revise?
    • 2. How much carry over is there when I begin the year by marking student papers at the locations where they might revise?
    • 3. What concrete tools (checklists, highlighters, story markers) work well for guiding students to independently revise after a writing conference?
  • 4. Some of my current findings:
    • Many students, especially language minority children need explicit instruction in strategies
    • Teacher modeling of strategies for revisiting helps students know how to approach some aspects of revision.
    • It’s important to establish routines for writing conferences, whether they be small group, peer, or teacher to student.
    • Access to resources such as personal or classroom word walls, picture/word lists for verbs, nouns, emotions, other words for said, etc. help children to be more independent while a teacher conducts conferences or small group mini-lessons
  • 5. Some Things I Hope to Do
    • Use and collect PQC and other kinds of responses to track their influence on revisions.
    • Make better checklists, notes, and other concrete tools to send with children after a conference
    • Look at my last year 2 nd grade student writing in third grade and ask their teacher about their attitudes toward revision.
    • Figure out how to ask students about conferences and their feeling of ownership.
  • 6. Resources I Have or Will Use
    • Student work samples over time
    • After The End: Teaching and Learning Creative Revision by Barry Lane
    • Sentence combining: A sentence-level writing intervention Bruce Saddler.  The Reading Teacher Newark:Feb 2005.  Vol. 58,  Iss. 5,  p. 468-471 (4 pp.)
    • Grammar Instruction and Technology Jan Lacina.  Childhood Education Olney:Summer 2005.  Vol. 81,  Iss. 4,  p. 247-249 (3 pp.)
    • The impact of teachers' comment types on students' revision http://eltj.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/reprint/60/1/34?eaf