Class Plan -- Unit One, Day 18
Assignment for Day 19
Re-read the essays you're interested in using for the Inquiry Essay. Annotate them with two things in mind: the issue/question you have chosen and your own personal experience. [IN CLASS, EXPLAIN IN GREATER DETAIL WHAT THIS ANNOTATION WOULD LOOK LIKE, PERHAPS EVEN MODELING IT FOR STUDENTS WITH A PASSAGE FROM ONE OF THE READINGS COPIED ON AN OH TRANSPARENCY.] Then take notes on everything that seems relevant to your issue. Write down all relevant ideas and passages (quotes). [EXPLAIN TO STUDENTS THAT THEY MIGHT SIMPLY WRITE DOWN PAGE NUMBERS AND BRIEF DESCRIPTIONS OF QUOTES AND PASSAGES RATHER THAN WRITING DOWN FULL PASSAGES. Also re-read your own Web Forum postings and the responses to them, as well as interesting postings written by your peers, and write down ideas from that material which seems relevant. Bring this collection of "raw material" to class next time, along with your copy of LL and three or four different colored highlighter pens or a pack of Crayolas.
Discuss Synthesis Grids from Last Class - Pass out the packets of synthesis grids which students created in the last class. Have them look over these grids and discuss which issues/questions seem to be the basis of conversations that lots of authors are involved in. Give them time to read over all of the grids done by other groups, encouraging them to decide which one interests them the most. (Tell them they will need to decide which one is most relevant to their interests and/or experience by the end of class.)
Discuss Web Forum postings as they relate to the Issues/Questions we've been discussing - Ask students to take out the notes that they took on one another's web forum postings. Conduct a discussion in which students (and you yourself, when necessary) offer connections between course readings and personal experiences/ideas expressed by particular students in the Web Forum assignment. Speaking out loud about another student's writing may be awkward for them to do at first, but you can get the ball rolling by commenting on one or two of the postings yourself.
Example of Synthesis of Text and Experience - You might spend a few minutes showing them what the intersection of text and experience might look like in an essay. (Many of them have never been asked to write this way before.) In later semesters, you might use examples from past students' writing. If you want to use the example from the Appendix, note to your students that this was a graduate essay and that is was written for a very different purpose (it was a literacy autobiography), but that they can probably get the general idea about how "formal" ideas from texts and "informal" ideas from personal experience can be discussed in the same paragraph. [YOU MIGHT ALSO CREATE AN EXAMPLE OF YOUR OWN, WRITING A PERSONAL PARAGRAPH IN WHICH YOU INCORPORATE AN IDEA FROM ONE OF THE READINGS DONE IN THIS COURSE. OR ONE LAST OPTION WOULD BE TO ASK A LECTURER FOR AN EXAMPLE OF AN INQUIRY ESSAY FROM A PREVIOUS SEMESTER.]
Freewriting on Issue/Question of Choice - In the time remaining, ask students to choose an issue/question that they are interested in (and to which their personal experience seems to relate), and to begin writing about whatever comes to mind. Tell them that this doesn't need to be at all formal, to use quotes, or to use lots of detail at this point. It just needs to get the ideas flowing.
Explain the assignment for next class, making sure to clarify the purpose for your students: they are collecting any and all material (from readings, from their own writings, and from peer writings) that is relevant to the issue on which they are writing. They will then work with this material next class period.
REMINDER ABOUT OFFICE HOURS?