As I look back at the syllabus and take a look at the objectives, I realize how much this course helped me to grow as a learner.
I have definitely learned a great deal about the variety of genres readers and writers use to communicate. I have also learned the flexibility in these genres. I have gained insight on how these genres overlap to meet the needs of the writer. Reading each genre is approached in a slightly different way, which is something I had not thought about before this class.
Before class I had not thought deeply about the role of purpose and audience when writing. I must admit that I now consciously think about my purpose and audience before writing a piece. This helps me to determine the genre I will use as I write, as well as the voice I will write in. This was a major learning point for me, as I do not recall focusing on purpose and audience in my own schooling as a child. I feel this has helped me grow as a writer, as well as make writing easier for me.
I had not thought about the idea of new literacy theories before this class. I had just seen new literacies as a way of the education world evolving. This is the area that I would like to explore more of, as I enjoy learning about the theories of literacy. Comparing the new to the old theories is of interest to me.
The relationship between the reading and writing process was a huge eye opener on the first night of class. I had never thought of readers and writers going through the same process. I am now much more conscious of this both as a reader and a writer. I feel this connection between the two has helped me to understand students in classrooms from a teacher perspective. I hope this information will someday help me as I am teaching students in my own classroom to be readers and writers. Personally I feel that students should know the connection between reading and writing more than the fact they both involve words, and one is creating text while the other is interpreting the text.
I was introduced to many types of reading and writing assignments in this class that could be used at a wide variety of age levels. I was impressed by the variety that we discussed. Technology has become so prevalent in our society that we need to be able to make use of it in the classroom. Before class I had only thought of a writing assignment with technology to be typing a piece in a word processor. I was exposed to so many new writing activities that I never would have thought of on my own. This idea of being able to use technology in new innovative ways in the classroom has excited me as a teacher. I now know that I can have fun with writing and teach my students to show their creativity in other ways than just words in electronic writing pieces. There is much more to writing when it comes to technology than forming sentences. Creativity with pictures, podcasts, and movies are all new ideas that I am excited to bring into a classroom some day. Although technology is generally used more extensively in higher grades, assignments can be tailored to fit students of younger grades. The earlier they are exposed to these types of reading and writing I believe the more excited and better writers they will become.
Writing assessment and evaluation was always a sore topic for me. I would become very uneasy when it came to assessing a student’s writing. The biggest shift in my thinking with assessment was realizing it is not always just taking a look at the final product, but paying attention to the student as they are using the writing process is important as well. Although I have grown tremendously with my comfort in writing assessment, I feel that this is an area I still need to grow in. I think this is something that will come with time and practice in a classroom of my own. I feel as though I can assess students work fairly now, but will become more comfortable and confident in doing so as time goes on.