Friday, September 08, 2006

Git 'er done

I swear that sometimes teaching writing is the most difficult thing in the world to do.

Today, for instance, after batting around topics and creating introductory paragraphs, we began to dive into the body paragraphs. I set up as well as I can how to do a Topic Sentence, SubTopics, and, most importantly, details. We do a sample on the board. I think they have enough to get to work. I then see dozens of pairs of eyes stare at me as if they are waiting for me to tell them what to write down on the paper.

They got to pick their informative essay topics. I can't force a topic on someone (well, I could but then that is a fight). So for a couple of days we were whittling down what they knew the most about. Everyone is an expert in something. Finding that something in a student can be tough. Sometimes they pick a topic and are done after a sentence or two.

Today was a "Git 'er done!" day as Larry the Cable Guy yells. Sometimes you have to forecefully power through an assignment or a writing activity to just get it done. That's a great activity in and of itself to just power through a task. That's what life will require. Some boss, and everyone has a boss, will tell you to get something done. You may not want to do it at all but evenif you save it for the last possible second you will have to finish. What happens if you don't finish? Ahh, your job could be at risk, if not fired outright.

I always love to answer the next question that students sometimes pose: "But a job pays us! When do we get paid for schoolwork like on a regular job?"

Answer: Years from now when you want more money and need the skills to do something. To show that you can get the job done when it is required of you.

Granted, there are many people who will never have a job that requires writing. That's fine. I always want to at least give the opportunity.

So today was a "Git 'er done" day. Power through the ideas and complete a body paragraph.

And the kids' job is easy! They only have to write one. I have to read each and every one of them! Now that's work!

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