Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Literacy: Modelled Writing & Strategies

Learning activity 5.7: Read SR 5.13: Hoyt, Mooney & Parkes and describe and explain the purpose of modeled writing and strategies a teacher could use when modelling and verbalizing the ‘thinking in their head’.

The purposes of modeled writing include that students understand the similarities and differences between reading and writing, and between fiction and non-fiction.

This enables students to creatively and effectively use each type of literacy practice, irregardless whether reading or writing for a variety of purposes and with a variety of audiences.

The purposes of modeled writing include

§ Watching the teacher use phrasing in sentences or paragraphs.

§ Observations of leaving a space between each word to make it more coherent and understandable.

§ The use of correct punctuation.

§ Become familiar with the different types of genres.

§ Know that the words that a speaker says can be translated into symbols and signs and written down on the blackboard/whiteboard/ or paper.

§ Understand that words that are written down can be broken into parts and is a combination of different letters (of sounds) put together.

Strategies that a teacher can use:

§ Provide explicit and frequent models and demonstrations in shared reading and writing.

An example is the modeling of writing an invitation card to a friend for a birthday party. The teacher takes out an old invitation card and shows it to the students. She then asks the students questions about the invitation card, and lists down on a chart or the blackboard what is needed to be written down on their invitation. The students can work on creating their own invitation cards during individual work time based on these criteria.

§ Inviting and supporting dialogue about the writer’s craft during informational book read aloud.

As a continuation of work for the invitation card that the children have written, the teacher can take out an informational book such as a recipe book. She will then read out the recipe and ask the students what they require from the recipe. The teacher then scribes down on the blackboard or paper as the students state their observations. The teacher can plan for the implementation of a cooking activity based on the recipe book used during the informational book read

§ Continuing the demonstrations and dialogue with the expectancy of increased involvement and understanding during shared reading and writing.

Finally, when the making of the invitation is completed, the teacher can present in a subsequent lesson, on how the envelope can be used to send a letter and what information is needed on the envelope. For this, the teacher will show and model the children a sample of used envelopes and stamps. She will frame the questions in context of the envelope, and scribe down the children’s answers. The students can then be provided each with an envelope, or create one of their own, and write in the information on their envelopes and post it into the “classroom post box”. If there is not a classroom post box, one can be made in lieu of this unit.

§ Providing further demonstrations and increasing the expectancy of independent use during guided reading and writing.

Finally, the teacher can implement the use of journals to write down their reflections on their feelings and findings through out the implementation of this unit of work. The teacher will revise some of these terms and new words that they have acquired throughout the week, or the unit and this would be used as part of the children’s work assessment.

The use of old invitation cards, used envelopes and recipe books are real-life examples that can be presented to the children. It not only provides real life examples of the literacy practices of people in society, but it provides a pre-made genre which the children can relate to as they would have seen these as familiar objects in their own daily lives.

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