Day 2 - Thursday, August 28th
Lesson Objectives: Review expectations for the course. Review the writing situation model. Discuss WTLs from Day 1 and homework done for today. Discuss strategies for critical reading. Introduce Portfolio 1 and hand out assignment sheet. Introduce summary types and conventions.
Connection to Course Goals: The rhetorical model for writing will be used throughout the course to demonstrate how writers use contexts to inform their writing. The homework discussion invites students to consider what influences them as writers in general, but more specifically, it asks them to consider how the context of this classroom helped determine what they wrote about and the approach they used when writing.
A Possible Sequence of Activities for Today
1. Review expectations for course, pointing out any expectations students articulated that lie outside the goals of CO150
2. Review the writing situation model
3. Discuss responses to homework - specifically how context shapes our choices
4. Discuss strategies for critical reading
5. Introduce Portfolio I
6. Introduce the concept of summarizing
1. Take roll (5 minutes): Find out who has added or dropped since the first class. Remember that some students who may not have attended the first class will likely show up today. If you have room (less than 19), you can sign an add form for anyone on your waiting list, and if someone has missed both classes you can dis-enroll them through the form you were given with your roster after class.
A Possible Lesson Introduction: Today we'll be returning to the idea of how context influences our choices and actions. By understanding how writers are influenced by various contexts, you will hopefully learn to make more confident and accurate choices with your own writing (in both academic and non-academic situations). We will also discuss the first portfolio as well as critical reading and summary writing strategies.
2. Review expectations for course (5 minutes): Discuss student responses from the WTLs completed on the first day of class. Address any student concerns that didn't come up on the first day. Also, you can explain the dual focus for the class -
1. Writing is our primary concern, so we'll spend a lot of time emphasizing things like purpose, audience, and context. (We tend not to focus on skills, such as grammar and mechanics, as much as we do on larger concepts and approaches to writing; however, we will work individually with students who face some challenges with grammar and mechanics and can address whole class concerns in this area when there appears to be a pattern of
2. Public discourse is our secondary focus (since it is an ideal topic for exploring the complexity of writing situations), so we'll also be looking at important social and political issues.”
You may wish at this point to also address any expectations they’ve articulated that you believe will clearly NOT be covered by CO150. This helps to clarify what the course will and will not do and it allows you to legitimize their goals, even if these goals lie outside the bounds of this composition course.
Here’s a Possible Transition to Next Activity, but please write your own! Last time we discussed the writing situation model. Today we'll quickly review that model and then use it to examine the situation you found yourselves in as you worked on your homework for today.
3. Review the writing situation model (3 minutes): Review the key points from the
writing situation model discussed on the first day of class. Students will have read the writing guide as homework for today (Understanding Writing Situations: Writing as a Social Act at https://writing.colostate.edu/guides/processes/writingsituations/). Use this review of the writing situation model as a transition into the next activity.
4. Discuss homework in relation to the writing situation model (15 minutes): For this activity it helps to label the diagram with students' responses to reinforce connections and to help keep the discussion on track. Note: possible responses and prompts are listed in parenthesis following the questions.
Start at the middle of the diagram and ask students the following questions:
· What was the text you produced? (homework - reflection on self as writer)
· What was your purpose for writing this text? (to complete an assignment, to impress the instructor or class, to learn more about one's self as a writer, to get an "A" in CO150)
· Describe the context that created your purpose for writing? (the college classroom, the first day of class, a small "classroom community" where participation is likely)
· What requirements and limitations did the context of a college classroom pose? (a deadline for writing, a computer to type the message and to print it out, limitations on language, tone and style, the possibility of having to share writing in class…).
· What opportunities did this context create? (an invitation to call on your own personal reflections, experience and expertise)
· How did the various limitations, requirements and opportunities shape what you wrote? (answers will vary)
· Who did you think of as your readers for this text? (you, the instructor, other peers)
· Did you think of your readers’ needs and interests? If so, what were they?
Sample Transition to Next Activity: So whether or not you realized it you were probably already thinking about context, audience and purpose when completing your homework. This course aims to help you think about these things more critically, both as a writer and as a reader.
5. Discuss strategies for critical reading (5 minutes): This activity asks students to think about how they can become close and critical readers.
Use the PHG (pgs. 153 - 154), the Critical Reading Guide on Writing@CSU (https://writing.colostate.edu/guides/reading/critread/), and the questions below to guide discussion:
· Ask students to identify what it means to be a “critical reader.”
o What makes an effective critical reader?
o How does one become a close reader of the text?
o What can you do to be more active and critical when reading an essay?
· Preview or survey your reading. This means looking over the reading before you begin it. With the NYT that would involve reading the news summary on page 2 before you read articles. Previewing allows you to estimate length/time requirements, activate what you know about the topic, prepare yourself for the content by reading the introduction and conclusion before your read all the way through.
· Apply close reading strategies (marginal markings, notes outside of text)
· Pose questions that challenge the ideas in the text
· Consider the context in which the essay was written
· Consider your context (what you are bringing to your reading and why you react the way you do)
· Consider how cultural context influences your reading (turn the critical lens inward and examine your beliefs and influences)
6. Introduce Portfolio 1 (7-10 minutes):
· Pass out the Essay 1 assignment sheet.
· Let them read it over.
· To check for understanding of the general terms, and the essay in particular, ask students to restate the purpose, context, and audience as a class:
o What is the purpose of this essay assignment?
o Who is your audience for this essay?
o What will you have to do to meet the assignment goals?
· Then, move on to discuss how these responses will affect their choices when writing Essay 1. Since the students are part of the general academic audience, include them by asking what type of response they would like to read.
o Given your audience, what will readers want to know?
o What type of reaction would you want to read?
· They should be able to generate such concerns as:
o a reaction that isn't a rant
o a reaction that doesn't go off on tangents or try to cover too much (focus)
o a reaction that has an appropriate tone
o a reaction I can relate to
o a reaction that is well supported with evidence
Here’s a Possible Transition to Next Activity: Even though your audience will mostly be concerned with your response, summary is still an important concept. If your summary is inaccurate or incomplete, your response could be misguided as well.
7. Introduce the concept of summarizing (15 - 20 minutes): Use these questions as a guide for this discussion. You may pick and choose from this selection or add some of your own questions to meet the goal of introducing academic summary. (See page 160 - 161 in the PHG for summary guidelines, and view the Teaching Guide on Types of Summary and Response (https://writing.colostate.edu/guides/teaching/summaryresponse/) when planning this activity). It helps to use the board to focus this activity. You can create two columns: General Summary and Academic Summary. Then, list generated responses beneath the appropriate titles. Note: possible responses and prompts are listed in parenthesis following the questions.
· What is summary (in general)? When do you use it?
Present an overhead with three types of summaries on it as follows:
1. Main Point Summary - is brief and gives an overall perspective on text
2. Key Point Summary - represents an author's argument more fully by providing other key points and supporting evidence in addition to the main idea
3. Outline Summary - is used to explore the structure of an article or essay. Shortened phrases are used in place of full length sentences.
Read through each type of summary and ask students which one they think will be most appropriate for Essay 1 (Key Point Summary). Then ask them why they made this choice (they are writing to an academic audience who has not read the essay and needs enough information to follow their response). Finally, ask them to imagine other contexts where a main point summary and an outline summary would be more appropriate. The point you want to make is that the content and organization of a summary will vary based on a writer’s purpose, audience and context.
A Possible Conclusion for Today’s Class: Today we began discussing academic summary as a way to prepare for writing Essay 1. Next time, we'll deepen our understanding of summary by using the writing situation model to think critically about a writer's argument.
Assignment for Next Time
Note to Instructors: A fundamental decision you will need to make about the summaries (and other pieces of writing) that your students generate is whether you want them to post their writing to the public forum of Syllabase (risk: copying by others; benefit: a public forum of ideas) or whether you would prefer that students post to the Writing Studio where documents are more secure but, conversely, less available for reading and reply.