Hi! I got to sit down and talk with one of my favorite people: Nancy Sommers. In Episode 6, Nancy Sommers talks about her first experience teaching, her work on responding to student writing, what comments best complement her teaching values, and she shares the importance of reflection in the writing classroom.
I mention some of Nancy’s work in that episode:
Nancy mentions Leaves of Grass and Pride and Prejudice (what she had students read in her first teaching experience), and she talks about the Harvard Study of Undergraduate Writing. There's a lot of good information and additional resources there.
In Episode 6, Nancy shares that she has students write a “Dear Reader/Writer’s Memo” that documents and reflects on what they do between drafts. This letter does a good job showing individual revision processes, and also helps communicate that writing is a process. Students turn this letter in with their final draft, and Nancy responds to both the final draft and the "Dear Reader/Writer's Memo."
I really like how Nancy engages in conversations with students throughout the semester about response, and she encourages writing teachers to think about response as a pedagogy. She brings up important questions that can help generate discussions between teachers and students about response in the writing classroom:
I hope you find these resources useful. Nancy gives us a lot to think about and a lot to do when it comes to response to student writing and making response central to teaching. You can listen to the full episode here, or read the transcript. Nancy was also on a bonus episode:
Thanks for listening and circulating the podcast.
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Teachers talking writing