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Student Writing: A Listening Exercise

As an eighth-grade writing teacher, I routinely focus on reading student writing and utilizing it for several purposes. I am designing effective lessons, creating sound rubrics for assessment, developing peer conferences and monitoring their ability to meet standards and benchmarks. However, I often forget about one of our most important, frequently overlooked roles as writing teachers: our role as listeners.
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Creating Authentic Audiences for Writing Students

One of the surest ways to motivate students to not only write, but to write with passion, purpose and power, is to make sure they have an authentic audience. This means they must write for somebody other than me, their teacher. Students must know that there is power in their words and that they can be heard.
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Students Write for Audiences Close to Home

Hands jut into the crisp autumn air, restricting my field of vision to a sea of shirtsleeves. While this is not an odd phenomenon after a new writing assignment, the types of questions are. “When will we mail it?” and “Can I make this longer than three paragraphs?” replace heavy sighs of “When is this due, again?”
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