Some notes from W.R.A.P. Day 1


The first day of my teacher workshop went well…. I plan to go through yesterday’s and today’s events a little more in depth this evening.  For now, I just want to type some ideas that crossed my haggard mind throughout Workshop Day 1 (Monday, July 27):

In no particular order:

1.  using the “apples” scene from Goodwill Hunting to emphasize original thought vs. ability to regurgitate (plagiarize)

2.  When Red is freed near the end of Shawshank Redemption:  This was his first honest series of words to talk about rehabilitation.  He didn’t say what he thought they wanted to hear; he spoke from his heart (and was rewarded, justfully)

3.  Teachers have a tendency to cherry-pick the curriculum (in an upper-level HS course).  In short, that could inadvertently be seen as that teacher’s agenda and not an encouragement of emphasizing an appreciation for varying (and opposing) points of view

4.  good writing does not equal exceptional proofreading skills

5.  I can teach what Voice is, but I cannot tell a student what HIS Voice is

6.  cosmetic hangups (below-average grammatical mastery) can kill a potentially poignant/brilliant POV if that’s all the teacher “corrects” or points out on a draft

7.  We need to encourage a “learn to think” attitude (when it comes to debate or POVs) and not a “learn to think like me”

8.  The Friends episode where Joey utilizes the thesaurus function on a personal letter in hopes of “sounding smarter” by “using bigger words” – These “big words” have little value when used out of context (the Voice is completely lost)

9.  We should consider (and vocalize outright?) what is at stake with every writing assignment.  A five-minute response to a short story vs. the entrance essay on a college application.  We want their best writing all the time, and a teacher who only points out flaws with each writing will lead to student burnout and distaste for writing

10.  Students have a tendency to withhold their truest POVs in fear of being “wrong” or in the minority.  How can we encourage them to always write what they truly believe?

11.  Future argument assignments:  1) I assign a topic/POV/stance; 2) the student selects his/her topic/POV

One thought on “Some notes from W.R.A.P. Day 1

  1. Dena Irwin

    Great observations and visual representations you can use in your lessons. I’m glad you are enjoying your workshop.

    Dena Irwin Sent from my iPhone



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