When I took down my website, you-can-teach-writing.com, in 2013 to work on books about teaching writing. I didn’t expect it would be 2015 before I got even one of them finished. However, a new book came out in February, 2015, and other new books and new editions of old ones are in the pipeline.
New in 2015
The Writing Teacher’s ABCs provides help for new, scared stiff, nonfiction writing teachers. Everything they need to know to get started teaching teens or adults to write nonfiction is laid out from A to Z.
Instead of telling everything new teachers might need to know, I’ve focused on the least they need to know.
My experience, and that of others who were thrown into teaching writing without any preparation other than the title of the required text, is that if new writing teachers can keep two weeks ahead of the students, they can get through the course.
The experience of teaching will provide all the rest of the information they need.
The chapters don’t need to be read in A to Z order. For example, someone worried about whether they can possibly succeed as a writing teacher can go directly to chapter Q to find the necessary qualifications for teaching nonfiction.
The Writing Teacher’s ABCs is available from in three digital formats: EPUB for iPad and other ebook readers and phones, MOBI for Kindle, and in pdf format for computer viewing. Visit the #ABCwrite page at LeanPub to learn more about the content and select the amount you wish to pay for it.
Updates in process
Slated for updates soon are two of my most popular earlier publications, Shape Learning, Reshape Teaching and Talk It Out.
Shape Learning, Reshape Teaching takes the instructions teachers in any discipline need to know about informal writing and applies it to English teachers’ biggest challenge: getting students to apply “grammar rules” correctly in their own writing. If you can use informal writing to teach and assess writing mechanics, you can use informal writing for any aspect of a English/communications curriculum.
Talk it Out is a set of questions to guide pairs of teens or adult students in planning nonfiction writing collaboratively. The second edition student materials consist of 30 questions that structure a peer conference so one student can talk another through planning an essay.
The questions are formatted so they can be printed a sheet of 30-up labels. In addition, Talk It Out second edition includes digital access to the questions for students outside class or in bring-your-own-device classrooms. The questions fit all nonfiction genres required by the Common Core State Standards except narratives.
Bullying isn’t just a behavior problem. It’s also a communications problem. Bullying Begins as Words gives teachers 12 nonfiction writing prompts about the verbal and nonverbal communication that occurs in bullying situations and elsewhere.
Each prompt is accompanied by a learning standards chart that shows teachers how it aligns with educational objectives, including Common Core State Standards, and discussion of how to deal with the challenges students will face in using the prompt.
Grammar Abusers Anonymous is a guide to help mature teens and adults study grammar using their own flawed sentences as practice. The 12-step program can be used with any grammar text or with online resources.