Category Archives: Reflection

Reflections on 3/27

I am often interested in the idea of how one’s knowledge or experience shapes us—in many spaces and experiences, one can ponder this question (of course)–we can extend this to this to a discussion of what it means to be open as a thinker, student, scholar, etc., as well as what it means to resist a thought. This was especially interesting to me from the Reiff and Bawarashi reading and I liked that we all responded (on some level) to this notion of “novice”. It seems to me that we always have to rely on our and students’ previous knowledge and experiences, yet at the same time, be able to “let go” of certain teachings or ideas when we encounter a new writing situation (or any other new situation perhaps). I think that the same holds true for what it means to be an attentive and open reader. Therefore, I began (as I mentioned during the meeting) to think about Daoist and other famous statements about how our knowledge should ultimately make us realize that we always need to be open to more learning, yet so often, what we know makes us resistant, makes us stuck or lack flexibility, etc. On a practical level, this is also helpful for me throughout this PD because it is so important to be able to let go of what we became used to teaching—so often it is hard to not teach certain texts, lessons, etc, that we “have always taught”. I could not help but think of what we have all been saying about concerns about teaching differently, this PD, bringing in new approaches, etc.  My point here is that this reading ended up being helpful in different, unexpected ways—we can all benefit by thinking of ourselves as novices or beginners, even if we might be considered experts in our fields.

Summary of our March 27 Meeting

I enjoyed seeing all of you. I missed you, in fact. My brief reflection, as follows, in backwards order:

Next time (Apr 3), we get to talk about the Multi-Modal Project. First. And we get to brainstorm as well as set up some parameters for ourselves.

Tasks and rhetorical analysis were discussed vis the recently assigned Reiff and Bawarshi reading, squared with the reality of how our current 1121 students approach genre. We all seemed to like the reading. We all seemed to feel that it affirmed the new way that 1101 is now slated to carry a greater load of Genre Unit work. We like that Genre is being split down the middle between 1101 and 1121 — bridging the courses, if you will. We aren’t sure exactly how to word that split for future cohorts yet, but we feel confident, based on real-time, this-semester experience, that it’s the right thing to do. Bravo.

Our colleagues in the department may not be so happy-go-lucky as ourselves. They may need a FAQ sheet to calm down and address their concerns as we invite them to join the ranks of New 1121 Adopters. Greater minds than mine will be writing this sheet, and I will swoop in and comment in some pithy way on it. Heck, I may even help.

We used the nifty Keurig machine a lot. That’s because it helps us think and makes us feel special.

Carrie looked nice in her scarf. She presided, until a very tan Robert entered. Well, even after he entered.

Reverse summary done.


My first month story includes no “Narrative”

So I realize that I’m guilty. I didn’t really do a Literacy Narrative in my UNIT 1. I think/hope that I can take forward those skills that I fostered with my UNIT 1.

Intuition. Recognizing how we are all hardwired with language — and how to re-wire ourselves, create different pathways.  Self actualization: its benefits, and a little bit of How to Do It — how writing can be a tool for it. How scary and powerful writing is. It’s not safe. It’s also totally accessible.

In addition to the feedback I got from the classes, this is what I, personally, am telling you I felt we got.

Nobody really taught me how to access my own intuition in an English Class environment. I learned that in the arts and in the performing arts.

I also have long done a “literacy narrative” lecture of my own. Only, I didn’t know that’s what it was called. And I’ve done it late in the semester, not early. I will try to cycle all this around, like some sort of charcoal in a fish tank.

Thanks for reading. I’ve found all your writing so inspiring on Literacy Narrative. Now, I (the teacher) know what it is.That’s a start for next time.

P.S. We talked a lot about Process. Still, it’s not the same.

UNIT 2, here I come.

Literacy Narrative Reflective Manifesto From My 1121 Class

So lovely to see everyone today! As promised, here’s the in-class “Reflective Manifesto” of my 1121 class’s literacy narrative reflections and standards for our classroom’s discourse community. It was a fun (and hopefully helpful) cap on the Literacy Narrative assignment and transition into the genre awareness/discourse community assignment. The below are responses from students in my class (after group discussions), in primarily their own words.

I’m also attaching (at the end of this post) my handouts on Rhetorical Analysis and Mentor Texts (which were tremendously inspired by/stolen from/adapted from Carrie’s explanations and handouts/info for students). Sorry to conflate the two topics, but this is everything swirling around my head this week, and god only knows what will be happening there tomorrow or next week.

Literacy Narrative Reflections From ENG 1121, Writing Across Situations:

1.  What best practices do we have to offer other writers coming into college?

    1. Making sure you don’t repeat a claim – in an argument-based essay
    2. Make an outline! (before writing)
    3. Proofreading – read it over to make sure you have no mistakes
    4. Brainstorm by just writing whatever comes into your mind, if you think too hard you might stop yourself, just let them flow!
    5. To make sure that you don’t have any run-on sentences and fragments, add commas or break it up into two sentences
    6. Ask for suggestions from your partners – fellow readers – get feedback on what others think

2.  What understanding of literacy and our own writing process can we offer to this discourse community of our classroom?

    1. Use of technology as a form of literacy – necessary in the 21st century for communicating and work
    2. Our pieces of writing come together better when we are interested in the topic, we write more freely – power of choice – when you choose your topic, you pick something that you’re interested in. It should come out more easily more freely
    3. Being able to explain what you’re writing about is important – not just writing it, but understanding the concept of what you’re trying to say. Can get a different perspective

3.  What literacy goals do we have for the rest of the semester and the rest of college?

    1. Challenging myself to write more, personal writing, and writing in general – to work on making my writing more engaging
    2. Refining my writing skills with group review – helpful to have others point out mistakes or things you don’t think of
    3. Completing the essay by explaining the idea of the essay to answer the question, communicate clearly, and really address the issue at hand
    4. Manage your time to spend the right amount of time/emphasis on each paragraph, make sure the ideas flow
    5. Improve our diction – choice of words, appropriateness of words
    6. Improve to our voice and personas as writers

4.  What are our standards for our discourse community and the genre conventions in our classroom?

    1. Writing essays for this audience
    2. Communicating – posting in the blog, talking in groups in class, being respectful
    3. Peer Review! A whole genre in this class
    4. Giving each other critiques – analyzing writing and our own writing with the same process
    5. Showing up to Pearl 504B between 11:30-12:45 on Tuesdays and Thursdays
    6. Adhering to the Assignment Guidelines – page count, appropriateness of subject
    7. Typed printed out double-spaced work
    8. Turning in assignments on time!
    9. Shared classroom language: literacy, rhetoric, metacognition, ethos, pathos, and logos – way of thinking – rhetorical appeals, discourse community – people way to have a language in common, code switching, multiple literacies
Rhetorical Analysis Handout
mentor text handout