[NOBE-L] Creative Writing Practicum

taranabella0 at gmail.com taranabella0 at gmail.com
Fri Feb 7 02:14:16 UTC 2020

Hi Matthew,

I taught third grade for two years, and I am currently a second grade teacher. Some of the strategies I use when teaching writing groups include: using game show buzzers that each have a unique sound to answer questions about a mentor text, using celebration claps to reward when students read their writing out loud to the group for everyone to praise and make suggestions, listening for the sound of a pencil moving, and removing any distractions. If I notice I have a student fidgeting with items inside their desk, I will have them turn the desk around so that the opening is facing away from them. As you mentioned, I have used apps with sighted volunteers to assist with grading papers, however, I have my students write their names on the back of their paper and use a uniquely shaped hole punch in the corner of each student’s paper to tell who’s belongs to who while maintaining confidentiality. In third, we used a lot of rubrics and checkless to work on editing their own writing before turning it in, and this helped to correct some of the more minor errors that would be more difficult to pick up on without having someone with Vision look for them. It sounds like you’ve already gotten some great suggestions, and I think you should have no problem managing your writing group. Have fun, but be firm with the kids and you will quickly form positive relationships with your students. 

Tara Abella

> On Feb 6, 2020, at 7:17 PM, Matthew Robinson via NOBE-L <nobe-l at nfbnet.org> wrote:
> Hi all.
> So I am an English education major at Southern Utah University. I am retaking a class about methods of teaching writing. As part of this class, we have an opportunity to teach a practicum with small groups of third-graders. When I took this class the first time, I had a tutor come with me to be an aid and a reader as needed. Because I was not confident in how to manage multiple students alone and perhaps because the presence of two adults instead of the one sent mixed signals to the students, we ended up splitting the group in half. This wasn’t essentially problematic, although as a future teacher I can’t really do that.
>    Coming back into the practicum, I’ve gotten some advice on it, to the point where I feel fairly confident I can do it alone. But it’s been more other blind teachers’ experiences teaching that I’ve gotten—for example, they would put bells on the doors so as to tell if a student snuck out, or they would look for some non-visual indicator of otherwise undetectable misbehavior or lack of participation. My question is, how do I responsibly manage three students and not have them slip anything past me—although as we all know, that happens with all teachers from time to time? How can I do this enough to earn respect? How can I adapt to the students’ use of paper instead of electronic means to write and share assignments? It’s been suggested that I use Aira or have students self-check or check each other when appropriate. What do you think? What’s worked for you?
> Thanks in advance for your help.
> Matthew Robinson
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