Re: freewriting

Claudine Keenan (cgk4@PSU.EDU)
Wed, 24 Jul 1996 20:56:31 GMT

At 04:41 PM 7/24/96 -0400, Becky Rickly wrote:

>In my experience, anyway, teachers do base their practice on what they've
>seen/heard/learned. So, in essence, our stories DO become practice. Good
>teachers are constantly re-examining this practice, but nonetheless, we
>generalize about what worked/didn't work before and act accordingly. How
>is this any different?
>--Becky, who's trying, ala hugh burns, to remember her porpoise....
and I couldn't resist the opportunity to dive in after that, so:

Becky and Mike, you seem to be saying that the more experience we get, the
more prescriptive we may become, (whether we want to or not) but I can't say
I agree with that, at least not yet.

As a brand new teacher, I clung to my textbooks, to my theoretical models,
and to every revision-oriented word my advisors and mentors uttered, and I
tended to wield these heavy clubs of "expert" advice over my students' heads
because I feared that my own amateur responses to their writing could never
be adequate enough to help them improve.


My experience, if anything at all, has allowed (compelled!) me to become
less prescriptive, to learn the most difficult aspects of teaching
writing--when to simply shut up and let them go, and more importantly how to
help them ask the right questions of their *own* about their writing, so
that they can improve *without* me (or my textbooks or my theories or my

Is that where you're going, Mike?

Claudine Keenan
Claudine Keenan
Penn State Allentown
Epiphany Site Coordinator