3 thoughts on “Draft Literacy Narrative Assignment – Pizzino

  1. Amity Nathaniel

    Hi Devon! I miss being in the workshop with you because you always have good ideas and experiences to share. This is random, but what’s your zodiac sign? You give me Virgo vibes (and I’m a Virgo).

    Okay, back to the task at hand. I really liked your assignment and I can imagine that your class is a really cool (but also really productive) environment. Reading your assignment made me excited to actually write and submit my OWN literacy narrative! The GZA lyrics and Jason Reynolds quote makes this assignment feel very hip and diverse. I also think that everything was perfectly structured and very clear.

    I do think your assignment is a little lengthy, which I can imagine may overwhelm some students (especially considering that this is their first major essay). Personally, I am a huge fan of packed writing prompts because it provides every single piece of info a student will need in order to succeed…and you do an excellent job of including details for a very clear path towards success. Could the “Moving from Prewriting to Exploratory Drafting” section be chopped turned into its own prompt? Perhaps. Could the “Pre-Writing: Finding Your Focus” questions be cut in half? Maybe. But is it necessary to eliminate the info out of this prompt? Nope. I also know for a fact that you’d tailor your assignment around the type of vibe you have in the classroom.

  2. Carrie Hall

    Devon, I agree with what Amity has written. I think this looks like a good assignment, but perhaps one that might seem overwhelming. I’m also curious to know (and I think it matters) what lit narratives you’re going to have students READ to model their own narratives on. For example, you value argumentation (which isn’t a necessary ingredient in narrative) in your grading. That’s fine– but you will need to show students examples of that.

    My main suggestion would be that you start the assignment letting students know the goal. That is– let students know what the task is that they are building toward. I get that they will be finding clues in their own prewriting, but also it really does help to know the purpose. With this in mind, I think you are asking something pretty specific in your two prompts, which is that students focus on one or two specific anecdotes that relate to the development of their attitudes toward literacy. That relates to both early memories of reading/ writing and people who played roles in their development. In fact, you may want to have students read something by Deb Brandt, a very famous literacy scholar, who developed a theory of literacy sponsorship.

    I also suggest you clarify your pre-writing questions. It’s fine to have a lot of them, but the way it’s written right now, I’m concerned that students are going to answer ALL of them in only one or two sentences. I think it will be much more fruitful if they answer one or two questions, but thoroughly.

    Let me know if you have questions.

  3. DPP Post author

    Thanks both of you. I’ll edit this accordingly. I’m a cancer, Amity! Thanks for the comprehensive and kind feedback. I look forward to having the opportunity to spend more time in person with you even just to grab coffee and chat because I also find your ideas interesting for class assignments/discussions and helpful for seeing different ways to better support students! Fingers crossed we won’t be continuing this virtual life much longer.

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