Over the past few weeks, I have had the good fortune of facilitating our 2013 Chippewa River Writing Project and participating in a number of Google Hangouts where I have talked about my new book, Crafting Digital Writing.
I’ve gathered all those videos up and posted them on a page of the book’s companion wiki. All in all, I’ve had some great conversations with some amazing educators, and I hope that you find them as useful to listen to as I found them when I was participating in them.
Also, in the past two weeks, I have had to-coauthored journal articles released, both available for free online. :
- Hicks, T., & Turner, K. H. (2013). No longer a luxury: Digital literacy can’t wait. English Journal, 102(6).
- Hicks, T., Turner, K. H., & Stratton, J. (2013). Reimagining a Writer’s Process through Digital Storytelling. LEARNing Landscapes, 6(2), 167–183.
Then, last week, I was out in Colorado presenting at the Conference on English Education summer gathering. It was great to talk with other English educators about the power of my professional writing group and some of the research I am working on right now. Needless to say, it’s been a busy summer so far!
Then, next week, I work my way down to the Discovery Education near DC to present at their Common Core Academy with a stop on my way home in Charlottesville, VA, to work with teachers at Albemarle County Public Schools on creating their digital writing workshop. In fact, we had a virtual meeting today to start our conversation, and they came up with a great list of topics for us to pursue next week:
- Digging in deeper to smart assessment practices and building useful rubrics
- Among their PLC, creating a repository of digital mentor texts and teaching resources
- Exploring the affordances and constraints of different forums for students to write and comment on each others’ writing
- Discussing ways to help parents who may be hesitant letting their students use digital writing tools feel more comfortable about why and how we are teaching with web-based technology
As I reflect on the summer so far, I have been impressed with the willingness and dedication of teachers, all working to understand the Common Core and implications for digital writing with their students. Most of these conversations have been positive, despite the negative political rhetoric surrounding the CCSS right now. I am still not an outright fan of CCSS, but I am confident that many teachers are thinking about how to use these standards in thoughtful, generative, and — dare I say it — even creative ways, not reductive ones. Let’s hope that we can keep the positive momentum going, focusing on how to help students craft digital writing.
One last note — please join in the book’s G+ community and feel free to post. I need to get back in there and stir up some conversation, yet always welcome comments, questions, and insights from you, too.
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