Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Write in the Middle
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Write in the Middle
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Workshop 6: Responding to Writing: Teacher to Student

Because of the personal nature of writing, one of the best ways to teach the craft is to interact directly with individual students. To make these vital student-teacher conferences as effective as possible, teachers need to be intentional in their planning and practice. At the same time, they must balance the benefits of conferencing with the challenges of fitting it into their busy classroom schedules.

"Responding to Writing: Teacher to Student" demonstrates how five teachers—Jenny Beasley, Vivian Johnson, Mary Cathryn Ricker, Laurie Swistak, and Jack Wilde—use student-teacher conferences to help their students improve as writers. The workshop provides classroom illustrations of several different approaches to conferring with students including formal one-on-one conferences, informal one-on-one interactions, and formal and informal conferences with student response groups.

Through interviews and discussion, the teachers reflect on their practices: planning effective one-on-one and group conferences, achieving a balance between providing direction and taking over students' papers, using conferences to assess student learning and communicate expectations, and dealing with classroom management issues related to conferencing.

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