Wednesday, October 11, 2006

How I talk back to the texts

Both of the articles "Responding to Students Who Disclose the Violence in Their Lives"by Douglas Fisher and "Warriors with Words: Toward a Post-Columbine Writing Curriculum"by G. Lynn Nelson, offered great insights on how to deal with children who are violent or have been involved in violence.

I found myself agreeing more with Nelsons piece. The article was very passionate explaining why writing personal stories can be a great outlet for kids. People do want their personal experiences or thoughts heard and we as teachers have to be the listeners. Fisher brings up a good point that there are many different ways to respond to violence but the best way is the "Professional Approach" offering help to the writer. Fishers article seems to focus a lot on helping the students while Nelson wants the child to write a personal story that will change the writer and reader just in the telling of it. I think this is a strong comment but I think it works. We are all affected by what we read and the things we express on paper. Reading these stories together can help people be closer and move away from the ever present violence. We can try and help kids in the way Fisher describes but maybe the extent of the help is allowing the students to vent and then listening to their frustrations.

Sometimes, when I am upset with someone I write them a letter. Whether or not I give it to them, my frustrations have been let out on paper and I am left with a sense of relief. Students need this outlet and as English teachers we can provide this in our classrooms


Blogger Cindy O-A said...

The letter-writing ideas is a good one! How could you use it to help kids deal with tough issues in class? Do you think that it might help them respond personally and constructively at the same time?

10:23 AM  

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