Week 5: Monday, September 22nd - Friday, September 26th
Week 6: Overview
Notes and Advice
Before beginning this
portfolio, decide when you'd like to take your class to the
library for research instruction. It's best to schedule a session
at the start of Portfolio 2, for either Week 6 or Week 7, before
students begin researching their issues more extensively. Contact
Sari Keilmand by email at email@example.com.ColoState.EDU
to set up an appointment. (She would prefer that you call at
least two weeks ahead of time). To expedite things even
further, you can fill out the online sign-up
sheet for CO150 library instruction
and your information will be processed from there.
Keep in mind, however,
that Library Day still involves you; you should attend the session
with your students so that you can incorporate the skills discussed
there into your lesson plans.
In this portfolio, your
students will be making the shift from focusing on individual
positions to understanding the similarities among positions that
allow them to generalize about shared approaches (or perspectives)
to an issue. This portfolio begins with identification of an issue
that interests them (the Topic Proposal) then moves to what students
themselves (each individually) bring to the issue in terms of
their own contexts, values, beliefs, affiliations, etc. (Personal
Position Analysis) and culminates in analysis of the positions
and shared approaches writers are taking toward their issue.
The collection of News Clips on issues in the "contact zones"
will also help students gain a sense of the values and beliefs
that underlie different positions and shared perspectives. By
conference time, students should have a working Annotated Bibliography
that constitutes a representative sample of sources from different
perspectives. (In Portfolio 3, they then enlarge upon this annotated
bibliography to find additional sources that align with their
emerging point of view.)
The key in this first
week of the portfolio is helping students understand what a debatable
issue is and how they can explore it. By encouraging your students
to select a debatable issue that interests them, you’ll increase
the likelihood that they will produce better writing, since students
are more likely to write well about issues they care about. We
want students to be invested in their issues so that they will
think critically about them and so that they revise their writing
more willingly. We also want students to apply concepts involving
the writing situation (context, audience and purpose) to their
own thinking about writing. This goal is achieved by having them
write for an academic audience—you, the instructor, and the students
in your class. Even in the initial stages of their research, students
will need to consider and choose topics that are most relevant
to their audience and their audience’s understanding of the goals
of the assignment—that is, to represent the complexity of the
issue by sampling and characterizing the positions and generalized
approaches to the issue. The library instruction will help students
hone their research skills and teach them to seek out current,
credible, and valid sources.
Connection to Course
This portfolio marks a shift from focusing on the arguments advanced
form individual authors, that is, focusing on individual positions
on an issue, to understanding the larger conversation about an issue.
This portfolio also shifts the selection of articles from the instructor
to the student. Each of the components here is connected to
the conversation metaphor that runs through the course. Finally,
the process of analysis is an important skill that students will
need when writing for both academic and civic purposes.
unit marks a transition in your lesson planning. You are
responsible for creating and putting activities together to instruct
your students. You will find explanations of goals or objectives
that you need to accomplish and options for choosing among various
activities that meet those goals. Be aware that the minutes
indicated after activities may not always add up to a full week
of class sessions, so the responsibility for creating your own
activities is increased in this unit. But you still need
to be meeting the weekly and course goals as we progress, so if
you have any questions about planning your classes, please feel
free to ask Mike, Kate, Steve, Sarah or any of the lecturers.
you write your specific lesson plan for each class day, be sure
to include an overall LESSON OBJECTIVE or GOAL as well as a CONNECTION
TO COURSE GOALS. Remember also to introduce the plan for your
class each day, provide transitions between activities, and to
review at the end what was accomplished and why. To the greatest
extent possible, ask students to conduct the review at the end
or perhaps to provide a review at the beginning of the next class.
Asking students to do this work instead of doing it all yourself
encourages them to take responsibility for making connections.
Quite simply, they will learn more by doing it this way. Their
direct involvement is also more engaging than simple lecture and
Assign that NYT articles on
issues to be considered for Portfolio 2 be brought in for the
next class. Assign the continued collection of news clips (10
total by the end of Portfolio 2) now with an emphasis on social
and cultural "contact zones" or areas of conflict or debate
caused by competing values, beliefs, or contexts.
Required Readings and
Ask students to do the following this week:
Read Deborah Tannen's essay, "The Argument Culture,"
on pages 401 - 405 in the PHG. Annotate her points in
the margins and carry on a dialogue there, indicating which
points you agree/disagree with and which points raise questions
or concerns. Note: You may want to assign this reading
on the last day of Portfolio 1 so that you can begin Portfolio
2 by discussing it.
Read pages 570 through the top of 573 in the PHG about choosing
a narrowing a topic. Choose 3 topics in which you are
interested and post a brief description of them to the discussion
forum in the Writing Studio. Respond to the person posted
above you* with a few thoughts on how effective the topics chosen
are. You might also select one topic working with which
you feel the writer would have the most ease in Portfolio 2.
Realize that topics are shareable (just as long as we don't
have everyone doing the same thing!).
*If you are the first person posted, respond to the last person
Return to the News Clip Journal. Bring it with 10 sources
and at least three interesting issues identified (*you might
break this up over a few class sessions). Bring the newspaper
to class as well, of course. Identifying at least three issues
that interest you, briefly and informally summarize them on
the class forum in the Writing Studio for others to read.
At some point within
the next few weeks, it would be beneficial to both you and your
students to get some student feedback. This feedback does
not, in any way, need to be an evaluation of you.
Instead, try to glean insight about how the course is going for
your students in terms of pace, comprehension, community, and
suggestions for future classes (both students and teachers).
A simple WTL on three appreciations and three concerns about the
course can be effective or you can administer the evaluation form
found in the appendix. Getting
Student Feedback, Class
Ratings are also recommended for more information on the fundamental
reasons for collecting feedback at different points in the semester,
and they provide additional suggestions for soliciting it.