I have learned a tremendous amount this semester. It is nice to take time to look back and reflect on the Learning Outcomes listed in our syllabus. Reading through the seven outcomes, the one that stands out to me the most is “…the variety of genres that readers and writers use to communicate” (Jones, Fall 2012). I have gained a deeper and thorough understanding of each of the different types of genres, and I look forward to teaching them in my future classroom. However it is imperative that I take time to teach the purpose, audience and voice in writing, because students need to know how to write the basics before they can grow and develop as more complex writers.
As an educator, it is imperative that I research and stay up-to-date on contemporary models of reading and writing, including new literacy theories. I have learned many different historical theories in my other classes, but this class has allowed me the opportunity to explore technology as a way to develop my writing. This blog, for example, is a great tool to use with students to reflect on their learning’s. There is an array of digital technologies, such as wikis, word processors, online-portfolios that teachers can utilize with their students. Although they need to be adapted and scaffolded in order to meet the learning needs of your students; don’t be afraid to introduce them to early learners. This blog has been a great way for me to keep track of me learning this semester and read and reflect on my peers’ thoughts.
It is important to keep in mind that reading and writing processes go hand and hand. The more students read the better the writers they will become and vice versa. Teaching the different genres is a beneficial way to introduce students to different texts and become comfortable writing in different forms. This class has given me the confidence and knowledge to teach the variety of genres to my future students. However, it is imperative I utilize different writing assessment tools when evaluating my students work. I will use both informal and formal assessments to monitor my students learning; for example, keeping anecdotal record in a notebook and using rubrics or checklists to grade their writing. I look forward to using Rubistar in my future classroom to develop my own rubrics.
One thing I did learn this semester that is not represented in the identified Learning Outcomes for this course, is the importance of modeling and conferring with others. Modeling is essential for teachers to utilize in order to teach about the different genres and break down the learning process for students. Also, I believe it is essential for teachers to make time to conference with students once a week to go over their writing and answer any questions they have. I really enjoyed using our peer writings groups we made in class in order to get feedback on my writing and discuss my ideas.
Overall I have learned more than I can imagine this semester! I will definitely hold on to the books we used and refer back to them in the future! They are great resources to have.