CONFERENCES:† Today youíll be meeting with your students at their assigned times to discuss their papers. You should read the revised postings before conference if possible. Make sure you allow 15 minutes per person.† Some will probably take less and a few may take a little more.† Here are some general conferencing tips:
∑ For this conference youíll want to focus on the 3 main concerns:
- Do they have a focused, relevant overall claim?
- Do they have a clear sense of exigence/purpose in why theyíre writing this analysis for their
† audience?† Does the claim fit the purpose?
- Do they understand what evidence theyíll need to support their sub-claims?† What types of
† evidence do they plan to use?† What evidence do they have that can work?
∑ You might not get through all of these with every student.† One student may just need help on focusing his claim, or clarifying his purpose.† Another student might come with a clear claim and purpose but need some assistance with her evidence.† But make sure you cover these concerns in order of importance; remember that without a focus and purpose, itís difficult to use evidence effectively.
∑ Remember that itís their paper.† Try to help them make choices and decisions rather than making those choices for them.† To that end, the more they talk the better.† Try to ask questions that can help them make decisions.
∑ Try to stay with your schedule.† Donít go over with anyone unless you have to.† If they need more help, ask them to come back another time.
∑ Donít write on their paper.† Let the students do the writing.† In fact, encourage them to write during the conference to keep track of what youíve discussed so they can remember it easily when they go to write or revise their draft.
∑ Remind everyone at the end of conference of the assignment for Day 19, especially drafting their Essay 3.