Dear Dr. Jones,
I am really enjoying this class and learning more than I could ever imagine! This is my first semester of graduate school, and I feel I have acquired countless activities and strategies to utilize in my own classroom (and we’re only halfway through the semester!). I chose this course, “Reading Improvement through Written Expression” because I wanted to step outside my comfort zone. I take pleasure in reading, but I struggle when it comes to writing. My goal this semester is to improve my writing and become a better writer, and I think this class continuously supports me along the way.
One of the major themes this semester is examining the connection between reading and writing. They are recursive processes that influence and build upon one another; the more you read the more proficient writer you become and vice versa. Reading and writing require an individual to use their cognitive awareness to construct meaning. Through our class readings and discussions, I have concluded that we continually develop as readers and writers. There is always room for improvement and learning. As an educator I believe we need to allow for as much time as we can for reading and writing in the classroom, in order to support our students as growing literacy learners. Overall, both reading and writing allow one to reconsider, imagine, discover, and learn!
This course has provided me with numerous opportunities to fully transact and engage in the writing process. Reflecting on my previous experiences, I noticed I mainly wrote freely and did not think when I was writing. However, now I have become a more “active” writer; this means I organize my ideas beforehand, collaborate with my peers, synthesize information, then write and refine. As a result my work reflects my growth as a writer, and I am proud to share it with my professors and peers. It is important for me to set aside a specific time frame to work; I work best in a quiet atmosphere because it allows me to fully engage while reading or writing. This is essential in order to do well and develop as both a student and a teacher.
I have learned and acquired various instructional strategies and activities that I look forward to implementing in my future classroom. They will benefit not only me as a teacher, but my students’ literacy skills (both in reading and writing) as well. Introducing students to journal writing is a great way for them to develop their own voice and engage in what they are reading. There is an array of journal entries and texts I can utilize in the classroom in order to improve my students’ reading fluency and comprehension. I have also enjoyed learning about technology through the use of blogs, wikis, word processors, etc. It is important to me, as a literacy teacher, to expose my students to different writing outlets and meet their interest and needs as a learner. My goal is to take risks inside the classroom and step outside of my comfort zone because it is my professional responsibility to be the best educator I can be.
I feel you are doing excellent with supporting me as a learner, and I look forward to what is to come!