Wednesday, February 21, 2007
I think that e-mail and internet projects can improve students writing skills by engaging the students in purposeful writing. Students are affected by the audience of their writing. If they expect someone will read their writing, it will probably be of higher quality. There are several sites students can go to and e-mail experts in fields they are studying or favorite authors. They can ask questions or find out more information. This gives a "writing to learn" aspect to their writing.
When I began to think about this topic I was at first apprehensive. I thought of blogging as kids using MySpace.com and sharing too much information with strangers. After further thought and looking at the ways blogs can be used, I have changed my thinking. I think that there could be positive ways to use this medium. The fact is that students are going to be exposed to blogging some time in their life and it may be a good idea for teachers to use it in an educational way. Teachers could use blogs for responses to literature, book reviews, or ways to publish traditional writing assignments. As with other forms of technology it would give students a meaningful reason to write.
I think that publishing student work on the internet is a good idea. This would give students an authentic reason to write. It is also an adventure to see what they have written posted on an internet site. Publishing also gives the students a chance to think about their audience and their purpose for writing. The internet expands the audience for their work. They can also share their writing with friends and family who live all over the world. There are many way that students can publish writing on the internet. They can write essays, responses to literature,and multimedia presentations. The internet is a new component to literacy that has many uses that we don't even know yet. Students need to become familiar with how to use it.
Technology has changed the writing process. Many students are skipping the rough draft step in the writing process. They skip right to publishing. Drafting on a computer is much easier then on paper. Students are able to edit and and proofread easier. I think that this could be a mistake. I think that students need to plan their writing before they begin to draft on a computer. There are several ways to use a computer to do this. Inspiration is a great program that students could use to make a web or outline of what they intend to write.