Equipping Students with Tools for Effective and Engaging Communication
My personally designed Writing to Learn courses employ the IEW method and have been reviewed and approved through IEW’s accreditation process.
Writing to Learn students are given as much help as needed until the skills become easy and natural. At the beginning of each class, we review specific skills practiced in the homework. Students often are able to correct errors before turning in their assignments, which reinforces the concepts. Also, new skills are introduced and practiced in every session.
Between classes, Writing to Learn students complete assignments incorporating all preceding and new skills, which are broken into daily “to do” lists. The students work at home in partnership with their personal Editors. At different points between classes, the daily lists instruct students to take their work to their “Editors,” i.e., Mom or Dad, for review and collaboration. Editors are guided in this job by my detailed writing handbooks, which include explanations of all skills taught in class. Editors are empowered to help students when they run into difficulties. As Mr. Pudewa says,
The difference between a mom and an editor is that an editor gives corrections without a lecture attached. An editor does not give grades; he helps prepare a piece for publication. He is an assistant rather than a teacher. Your goal is to help them produce a finished product they can be proud of and teach by “editing,” not “correcting.”
In addition to their Editors, the students may also contact me for help. I am available during school hours by e-mail or telephone.
Over time, with repeated practice and constant feedback, the writing skills become ingrained habits!