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Strategy Instruction in writing

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Strategy Instruction in writing

  1. 1. Strategy Instruction in Writing for Struggling Writers Charles MacArthur University of Delaware
  2. 2. Strategy Instruction <ul><li>Research has demonstrated that well designed strategy instruction can produce substantial gains in writing quality for struggling writers. </li></ul><ul><li>Well designed strategy instruction teaches specific strategies for planning and revising strategies as well self-regulation strategies. </li></ul><ul><li>Staff development and wide scale implementation are significant challenges. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Research foundations <ul><li>Cognitive models of expert and developing writers </li></ul><ul><li>Research on self-regulation, e.g., goal-setting, self-evaluation, self-efficacy </li></ul><ul><li>Research on strategy instruction in general - direct explanation, modeling, guided practice </li></ul>
  4. 4. Proficient writers <ul><li>Planning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Set goals and subgoals based on audience and task </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Generate content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Organize using knowledge of text structure </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Production </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Generate sentences - language </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Transcription - mechanics </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Proficient writers (cont.) <ul><li>Revision </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Evaluate using extensive criteria </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop ideas </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Extensive self-regulation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Select and monitor strategies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Productivity </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Struggling Writers <ul><li>Minimal planning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Little thought of audience or purpose or goals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Difficulty generating ideas </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Limited knowledge about organization </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Problems with mechanics & language </li></ul>
  7. 7. Struggling writers (cont.) <ul><li>Minimal revising </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Poor reading skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Limited knowledge of evaluation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Difficulty fixing problems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus on mechanics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Poor self-regulation - Difficulty coordinating what they do know </li></ul>
  8. 8. We can: <ul><li>Teach specific strategies for planning and revising based on what good writers do </li></ul><ul><li>Teach students to self-regulate </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Set goals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cope with difficulties </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Self-evaluate </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Improve their writing </li></ul>
  9. 9. Examples: Task-specific strategies <ul><li>Planning strategies based on text structure </li></ul><ul><li>Revising strategies based on evaluation criteria </li></ul>
  10. 10. Importance of text structure <ul><li>Good writers use knowledge of text structure or genre to plan </li></ul><ul><li>Connected to purpose for writing </li></ul><ul><li>Helps to generate content </li></ul><ul><li>Helps to organize paper </li></ul><ul><li>Helps with self-evaluation </li></ul>
  11. 11. A Planning Strategy for Persuasive Writing -- (TREE) <ul><li>THINK: Who? Why? </li></ul><ul><li>PLAN </li></ul><ul><ul><li>T -- Topic sentence </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>R -- Reasons </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>E -- Examine reasons </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>E -- Ending </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Write and say more </li></ul>
  12. 12. Planning Stories <ul><li>THINK: Who? Why? </li></ul><ul><li>PLAN </li></ul><ul><ul><li>C - Characters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>S – Setting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>P – Problem </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A – Action </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>C – Conclusion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>E – Emotion </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Write and say more </li></ul>
  13. 13. Story map Character Setting Problem or Goal Events Solution
  14. 14. Compare-contrast Compare what? On what?
  15. 15. Importance of self-evaluation <ul><li>Research shows that teaching evaluation criteria along with revision is effective </li></ul><ul><li>Align self-evaluation, teacher evaluation, and accountability assessments </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Analytic scales like 6-Traits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Genre-specific evaluation scales </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Teach peer revising strategies </li></ul>
  16. 16. Self-evaluation for persuasive writing -- genre specific <ul><li>Did I state my position clearly? 1 2 3 </li></ul><ul><li>Is my first reason clear and supported by details? 1 2 3 </li></ul><ul><li>Is my second reason clear and . . . 1 2 3 </li></ul><ul><li>Is my third reason clear and . . . 1 2 3 </li></ul><ul><li>Did I summarize my reasons at the end? 1 2 3 </li></ul><ul><li>Is my essay persuasive? 1 2 3 </li></ul><ul><li>How can I improve my next essay? </li></ul>
  17. 17. Peer revising strategy <ul><li>LISTEN as partner reads </li></ul><ul><li>TELL what you liked best </li></ul><ul><li>READ and ask questions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Topic? Is the opinion clear? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reasons? Is each reason clear and related to the opinion? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Support? Is each reason supported with details? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ending? Is there a summary? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>DISCUSS your suggestions </li></ul><ul><li>Author makes changes </li></ul>
  18. 18. Peer revising -- Stories <ul><li>LISTEN as partner reads </li></ul><ul><li>TELL what you liked best </li></ul><ul><li>READ and ask questions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Characters? Are they clearly described? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Problem? How is it resolved? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Emotion? Does it show how characters feel? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>DISCUSS your suggestions </li></ul><ul><li>Author makes changes </li></ul>
  19. 19. Effective strategy instruction <ul><li>Meaningful writing in a social context </li></ul><ul><li>Direct explanation and modeling </li></ul><ul><li>Self-regulation strategies </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Self-statements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Self-evaluation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Goal setting </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Extensive guided practice </li></ul><ul><li>Mastery learning </li></ul><ul><li>Generalization </li></ul><ul><li>Motivation </li></ul>
  20. 20. Self-regulated Strategic Writers <ul><li>Set goals </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Purposes for writing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Motivation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Select strategies </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Planning & revising </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Know why and when </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Monitor progress </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Am I using the strategy? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Is my writing improving? </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. Research <ul><li>Meta-analysis of 39 studies (Graham, in press) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Effect size for quality - 1.25 (very large effect). Cf. ES=.44 for best method in Hillocks’ 1984 analysis. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PND - 89% (very large effect) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Most studies used LD (64%), LA (23%), or avg. (23%) with few good (10%), but all large effects </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Planning - revising; elem - sec; narr - expos. All large effects </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Effective in classrooms and in tutoring </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SRSD model more effective than others (ES 1.6 vs. 0.9) </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Implementation Issues <ul><li>Teach a few strategies intensively </li></ul><ul><li>Coordinate across teachers, grades, subjects </li></ul><ul><li>Compatible with process approaches that emphasize social context </li></ul><ul><li>Works in combination with content area instruction </li></ul><ul><li>Fits into a curriculum based on genre or purposes for writing (e.g., to persuade) </li></ul>
  23. 23. Challenges <ul><li>Getting from single strategies to strategic learners is a long term process </li></ul><ul><li>Demanding approach for teachers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Explicit explanation and modeling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appropriate support </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Evaluation of strategy use and results </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Teaching to individual mastery in a group setting </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Demands on schools </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Coordinated approach across classes and grades </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Little research on large-scale implementation or staff development </li></ul>

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