robinellen (robinellen) wrote,

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So this morning, I helped out in E's class for a while. I always enjoy working with this teacher (D had her, as well) -- she's funny and smart and very good at what she does.

Anyway, the students are working on creative writing. Last week, their teacher modeled how to write the beginning, middle, and end of a story (including a problem and solution). This week, they're on their own (kind of).

E decided to write about a haunted house. Her story is fine -- but man, I can really see that she doesn't read very much! D has always been a voracious reader, but E is closer to a reluctant reader. Even books she 'reads', she mostly skims through or reads in a non-linear fashion. She looks at the pictures (she's not interested in chapter books without pictures) and jumps around. I have no idea if she's getting any sense of actual story through all of this.

The result is that when she writes fiction, it's very pedantic. She doesn't know how to make those intuitive jumps using creativity. So she started with a problem (the kids were trapped in a haunted house). When asked how they got there, she didn't know. And she couldn't seem to think of any reason. Then her teacher asked her how they would escape, and after a couple minutes of thinking, she said, "The door?"


Yeah, I need to get her reading more...but that's not easy, as many of you know. The funny thing is (interesting thing?), when it comes to expository writing, she's amazing -- far ahead of everyone else in her class. In all honesty, I was very similar to her. I never had the patience for creative writing -- the difference was, I thought of too many possible directions the story could take and was far too lazy to explore any of them in depth. But when it came to non-fiction writing (of any sort), I could do it in my sleep.

Anyone have suggestions for E? :)
Tags: reading, writing
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