For next week!

Hi everyone!

Just a reminder that Jackie’s great post about breakout rooms, as well as some other resources, are HERE on the FYW website.

So, next week, our meeting will be asynchronous.  It will be a bit of a two-parter.  We will have a reading (on Perusall) and then a blog post, here on this site.  Instructions for joining Perusall and posting on OpenLab are below, should you need a refresher.  The reading and blog post should be done by Thursday, March 4 at 11:59 pm:

The reading, as we discussed in last week’s meeting is “Navigating Genres”  by Kerry Dirk.  This is a reading assigned to students in the 1101 curriculum, and is a seminal text explaining genre theory.  For the reading portion of our assignment, we’ll just comment where we are interested, confused, take umbrage, etc… I’d also like us to converse with each other– that is, you can comment on each other’s comments, either just by commenting below, or by using the @ sign (aka @carriehall)

Then, here on OpenLab, write a blog post (I’m guesstimating about 300 words here, but that’s up to you) in which you reflect upon the Dirk article: How do you feel about it? What did you learn from it?  How do you think your students might feel about it?  How do you feel about teaching genre awareness in 1101?

You will need to check a category to post.  Use category: 1101 Unit 1

Part two: 

Sometime between March 4 and March 10 (apologies– this previously said March 11.  We will meet March 10!), when we meet again on Zoom, please do 2 things:

  1. Read people’s OpenLab blog posts.  You can comment if you want!
  2. Read and annotate the (very short) article from Bad Ideas About Writing on Perusall) entitled “Research Starts with a Thesis Statement.”

To join our Perusall site (if you haven’t already,) go to and join.  It will ask you for a course code to join.  Ours is: HALL-G6ZRH.  You will find the readings under “assignments.” 

To post a blog post on this site, you must first have joined this site. This requires that you are a member of Open Lab and that you have joined this site (click “join this site” under the image on the project profile page).  HERE is some help regarding posting on Open Lab.

Note: I will send you an email with a link to our zoom recording from last week.  I don’t want to post it publicly.

3 thoughts on “For next week!

  1. Prof. Edelson

    The article “Navigating Genre” by Kerry Dirk takes a panoramic look at all the kinds of writing we do in our lives, and as such, I thought it might be useful to bring into the classroom, primarily because, as a writing teacher at Tech, the biggest obstacle I have to teaching is usually persuading students that writing matters, even if you are studying to become a dental hygienist or a computer network engineer. It is maddening on both sides of the question, the nagging, eternal question, why do I have to take this class. As someone who values literature and writing because they thrill me, the question doesn’t even come into my mind. “Why should I study this?” is like asking, “Why should I eat this?” when looking at a gorgeous meal. I never ask that. I just plow in. But for students who hate to write or hate to read, at least formally, the question becomes the first line of defense. As in, “You English teachers have already wrecked my self esteem, totaled my confidence, and now I have a question for you. ‘So what? So I’m not good at your little word games? Do you have any idea how irrelevant you are in the world where I live, get paid, and have fun? Completely.'” And I feel like this article, to some extent, addresses those questions. I’m not completely irrelevant because writing appears in every aspect of your life. Technology hasn’t wiped away the need for writing, but rather amplified its appearance in daily life many times over.

    I love the idea of Onion headlines as a genre all their own, and the ending with the different ransom notes is funny and instructive. Who is your audience for each note? What ransom note is most likely to produce the required result? Fun questions for people thinking about genre.

    1. Carrie Hall Post author

      One of the things that I am always wildly curious about is: WHY do so many students hate reading and writing so much? They haven’t always hated it, usually. Most kids love books and being read to– so that hate was learned. Where did it come from, and can it be un-learned?

  2. Prof. Edelson

    I think it’s because it’s hard. Things that are hard for the brain to do are actively rejected because people are reflexively trying to preserve glucose. But if writing and reading are taught at the appropriate level, that’s not the case.

    One problem I encountered once was I was tutoring a 5th grader who had had a really tough life. He was raised by drug addicted, but loving parents. He was an extremely strong reader, but had no interest in the books they were offering him in 5th grade. Like, he was NO WAY going to be reading about sweet little Harry Potter or Harold and the Magic Crayon. I put him on the Anne Rice Vampire books and he devoured them… they’re easy to read, but the maturity level is higher.

    Also, educators sometimes try to force students to do work that’s dull just to sharpen their skills. Reading a hundred fantasy or romance novels in a summer is going to serve a 7th grader so much better than making them read Elie Weisel. People have to be turned on before they become disciplined.

    On the other hand, no discipline is hurtful too, because no one likes a subject that they stink at!

Leave a Reply