WiR Educational Outcomes
Teachers are perennially seeking new ways to make literature accessible to all their students and, in particular, to capture and hold the attention of reticent readers and writers. Our educational outreach programs are designed to expand classroom teachers' understanding of literary writing and to offer new instructional strategies for teaching writing across the curriculum. Whether directly in the classroom or indirectly through teacher training, our programs not only help introduce students to the world of literature, but also allow them to get inside writing, to appreciate the process behind it, to interpret its content, and to respond to writing in a thoughtful way.
Through our programs students learn:
- To write concisely and make use of concrete details
- To convey passion and emotion in their writing
- To think logically on the page and write in the active voice
- To engage in brainstorming as way of generating ideas
- To write imaginatively and persuasively by using imagery, sensory description, and other rhetorical techniques
- To identify the structural elements of a poem and the various poetic forms (haiku, sonnet, free verse, etc.)
- To practice editing and revising
- To pay attention to word choice and the use of dialogue
- To be confident about presenting new ideas
- To appreciate the rhythm of writing and the musicality of words
- To express original ideas and share personal stories
- To develop public speaking skills and build their self-confidence
We have had many successes with students who initially balked at the idea of picking up a pencil at all. At the start of the Writers-in-Residence Program, the third grader who wrote this poem was among these reticent writers.
The lake sounds nice
like a mouse and thetrees sound like a breeze
with the robins singing
and a fire to warm up.
Especially after a Poetry on the Go field trip, this student's writing began to come alive. By the end of the 26-week program, this young writer was producing poems that were significantly longer, more imaginative, and more complex.
Spring . . .
Spring is wonderful baby
horses and cows are being born
in the world and caterpillars
are turning to butterflies and
birds are doing a good song
flying through the
wind and the sun
looking down being
flying flower to
flower and butterflies
are sucking pollen from
spring feels happy
like the sun.
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