Sunday, May 13, 2007

English Update. May 13, 2007. The Reading Teacher (May 07).

Idea summaries from The Reading Teacher, May 2007. Summarizing these articles does not imply advocacy. RayS.

Curriculum..... Video games.... Investigate the learning principles that underlie successful video games and how these principles can improve instruction. C Compton-Lilly. RT (May 07), 726.

Reading..... Video games..... What are some principles that underlie successful use of video games that could be applied to reading instruction? Authentic; engaging; read only books that interest; practice leads to improvement; risk-free; time to talk with teachers about what students are reading; broaden the range of resources. C Compton-Lilly. RT (May 07), 727.

Curriculum..... Achievement..... Performance gap exists between white, affluent Caucasian students and low-income white, African-American and Latino students--no matter what measure is used. WH Teale and LB Gambrell. RT (May 07), 728.

Reading..... Aloud..... Research on reading aloud to children, ages 3 to 6: improvement in vocabulary, literary syntax, story recall, organization and expressive language. However, modest relationship between frequency and quality of parent-child read-alouds; negative between kindergarten teachers' reading aloud and decoding. Merely reading aloud is not sufficient for oral vocabulary and listening comprehension. LM McGee and JA Schickedanz. RT (May 07), 742.

Reading..... Aloud..... Authors recommend that teachers read aloud interactively with young children. Means careful preparation before reading. LM McGee and JA Schickedanz. RT (May 07), 742-751.

Writing..... Summarizing..... Steps in teaching students to write a summary: study model; modeler writes a summary while thinking aloud; student writes summary and compares to model with the aid of the modeler. L Helsel and D Greenberg. RT (May 07), 753.

Computer..... Data..... "Being data rich doesn't necessarily translate into being data smart." NA Reilly. RT (May 07), 770.

Reading..... Summer..... Tips for parents. Early readers: point out print; read aloud and point to words; read short passage until child can read with you and then to you; older children should read to younger; pretend read; library; write messages; watch TV with captions on. Tips for parents of advanced children: talk about what child is reading; library; read aloud; listen to children read aloud; play word games. M Mraz and JT Razinski. RT (May 07), 788.

Monday, May 7, 2007

English Updates. May 7, 2007. The Writer. June 07.

The following selections are summarized or quoted from The Writer, June 2007.

Writing.... Words and Pictures.... "Words are undervalued as a means of expression. Pictures tend to trivialize experience." Attributed to Arthur Miller. Wrt (Jun. 07), 9.

Writing.... Stories..... "There are various schools of thought on whether or not man is a gregarious creature by nature. Personally, I doubt it. Men live together because it is safer, more convenient and easier, but they have never become quite reconciled to the idea. Strife will crop up, rivalry will grow intense, and the struggle for the simple necessities of life can bring men to the breaking point. Jungle law, fortunately for the writer, still prevails even if it has been smoothed over and made less obvious. The old emotions are still there, stirring beneath the surface, and ever ready to explode." Louis L'Amour. Wrt (Jun. 42/07), p. 9.

Writing.... Advice..... Read, read, read, always with an idea of what makes a book tick. E Goudge. Wrt (Jun. 07), 13.

Reading..... Interest..... Teachers, read to students. Students, read to teachers. BS McClure. Wrt (Jun. 07), 14.

Writing..... Point of View..... Write from the "you" point of view. "You woke up and saw blood on the ceiling." A very unusual point of view from which to write a novel or a story. A Plotnik. Wrt (Jun. 07), 15.

Writing..... Mysteries..... "When I begin a mystery, I know the killer, the victim and the motive." E. George. Qtd. by K Pohl. Wrt (Jun. 07), 21.

Writing..... Role..... Writing is a job but it is not a chore. E George. Qtd. by K Pohl. Wrt (Jun. 07), 21.

Writing..... Writer's Block..... Elizabeth George does not suffer from writer's block because she does preliminary work. Resource material. Character analysis. Plot outline. Lists of scenes. If "you have a problem, ask, 'What is the question.'?" E George. Qtd. by K Pohl. Wrt (Jun. 07), 22.

Writing..... Journal..... Elizabeth George keeps a journal on her writing while writing. Helps to demystify the writing process. E. George Qtd. by K Pohl. Wrt (Jun. 07), 22.

Writing..... Process..... "Every writer has a distinctive trade mark." RA Papinchak. Wrt (Jun. 07), 26.

Writing..... Revision..... If something tells you it's not right, free write it! [I understand freewriting as beginning with a word or phrase and continuing to write without controlling the direction of the thought. It's sort of a controlled brainstorm. RayS.] A Couturier. Wrt (Jun. 07), 28-29.

Writing..... Editing..... "Misspellings, typos and grammatical errors blow your credibility...." C Gulotta. Wrt (Jun. 07), 31.

Writing.... Advice..... Writers are often told to write what you know. Bah! That's what research is for--to reach beyond your personal horizons. DJ Bear. Wrt (Jun. 07), 32.

Writing..... Publishing..... Instead of trying to break into major magazines, publish in smaller, lesser known magazines or journals. L. Tritten. Wrt (Jun. 07), 47-48.