ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS RESOURCES
GENERAL RESOURCES ON WRITING AND TEACHING WRITING
BURKE, J. (2002). Tools for thought: Graphic organizers for your classroom. Portsmouth: Heinemann. This book contains two sections: a description of tools which can be used to engage students in thinking about the content and form of their writing and a collection of reproducible graphic organizers which can be adapted across content areas. The ideas presented in the book were designed when the author was working with many students who were achieving below grade level and/or were second language learners, but they can be adapted across developmental levels. Examples of actual student work are included. The tools presented in the text are consistent with the goals of a constructivist classroom and usually have something intuitive or familiar about them so that students can use them to gain understanding when they are confused.
CLOUSE, B. F. (2001). Working it out: A troubleshooting guide for writers. Boston: McGraw-Hill. This guide is presented in a question/answer format as a way of helping students deal with common problems they may encounter in their writing. Divided into five parts, the text offers suggestions on prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, and writing practice. The issues addressed include questions such as the following: How do I back up what I say? How can I get my writing to flow? What do I do if I want to quote somebody? Why can't I place a comma wherever I pause? The text contains over 240 specific strategies written in concise, clear language. Also, the questions and strategies are listed in the table of contents to make it easy for teachers or students to access appropriate information.
DORNAN, R. W., ROSEN, L. M., & WILSON, M. (2003). Within and beyond the writing process in the secondary English classroom. Boston: Allyn and Bacon. This text is geared toward English teachers but contains excellent information on teaching writing which can easily be adapted by teachers in any content area. The authors describe their basic assumptions about literacy and have chapters devoted to issues such as the following: the writing process, grammar, writing-to-learn, responding to literature and nonprint media, and responding to student writing.
KIRBY, D., & LINER, T. (1988). Inside Out: Developmental strategies for teaching writing, (2nd ed.). Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. This text provides a classic introduction to teaching writing in a way that engages students, supports their efforts, and uses writing to encourage learning. The authors address issues such as using journals, teaching students to write in a variety of forms, helping students revise, and evaluating writing.
LANE, B. (1993). After the end: Teaching and learning creative revision. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. This text is full of creative, specific activities teachers can use to encourage students to think about their writing. The activities support writers as they attempt to use details effectively, work on the form of their writing, and nurture voice. Most of the activities are designed more as mini-lessons rather than as activities that students can use with already existing pieces of writing.
LANGER, J. (2000). Guidelines for teaching middle and high school students to read and Write well: Six features of effective instruction. Albany, NY: Center on English Learning and Achievement. This booklet draws on a five-year research study in middle and high school English classrooms across the country. Langer presents, identifies, describes, and offers examples of six features of instruction that help students learn to read and write well.
LE GUIN, U. K. (1998). Steering the craft: Exercises and discussions on story writing for the long navigator or the mutinous crew. Portland, OR: The Eighth Mountain Press. Le Guin offers exercises that engage writers in creative activities removed from their own writing as well as activities that use their writing as a starting point. The focus of the text is on helping writers improve story writing. Through the use of guided practice, sample essays, and coaching, Le Guin provides an individual tutorial to the reader based on a workshop she presented.
OLSON, C. B. (2003). The reading /writing connection: Strategies for teaching and learning in the secondary classroom. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.Recognizing that reading and writing are complementary processes, the authors of this text discuss specific strategies that teachers can use in secondary classrooms to help students develop confidence as well as competence in dealing with text. Chapters deal with topics such as the following: scaffolding a reading/ writing lesson, teaching writing, writing to learn, grammar instruction, and writing workshops. Although the authors ground the text in theory, the strategies are practical, concrete and engaging.
PROGOFF, I. (1992). At a journal workshop: Writing to access the power of the unconscious and evoke creative ability. Los Angeles: Jeremy P. Tarcher, Inc. Progroff's text is a guide for intensive journal writing which goes beyond just writing about thoughts and feelings. In it he provides a structured way of creating a journal that helps the writer dig below the surface, write creatively, and experiment with writing. Teachers may find the text helpful for themselves as they explore their own writing or may find that they can adapt pieces of the program to use with their own students.
RICO, G. L. (1983). Writing the natural way: Using right-brain techniques to release your expressive powers. Los Angeles: J. P. Tarcher, Inc. The goal of this text is to help writers enhance their creative powers. It contains exercises writers can use to bring to the surface ideas, playful language, and metaphorical thinking. Teachers may find it to be a helpful resource particularly when generating prewriting activities.
SOVEN, M. I. (1999). Teaching writing in middle and secondary schools: Theory, research, and practice. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Soven provides a detailed look at teaching writing and provides helpful instructions for how to create effective writing instruction based on research in the field. The text is designed for language arts teachers, but can be helpful for anyone who wants to know more about things like how to use prewriting, how to design effective writing assignments, how to evaluate writing and how to respond to student writing. Specific examples are included throughout.
STRONG, W. (2001). Coaching writing: The power of guided practice. Portsmouth: Heinemann. Although this text is designed for language arts teachers, it provides an excellent toolbox of strategies for any teacher to support student writers during the writing process. Using the metaphor of "teacher as coach," the author discusses how teachers can coach students in areas such as creating paragraphs, using effective syntax, revising for language awareness, and strengthening the writing voice.
ZEMELMAN, S. & DANIELS, H. (1988). A community of writers: Teaching writing in the junior and senior high school. Portsmouth: Heinemann. This text provides an excellent overview of teaching writing using the writing process. The authors give detailed instructions on how to design and conduct writing activities, how to evaluate writing, and how to use writing to learn strategies effectively.