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writing, I would like to focus on his using proper conventions within his writing. This skill will be the most beneficial to him as he moves forward into middle and high school writing classes. Alex provided me with a writing sample of a personal narrative that he had written about his grandmother. The overall essay was well composed and presented well. One noticeable issue was Alex’s use of conventions throughout the essay. The essay had a lot of dialogue but was missing the quotation marks to signify there was a discussion occurring. He also struggled with comma placement, and punctuation in multiple places throughout the essay. These are some areas which I would focus on strengthening with Alex. As I reflect on the best way to meet Alex’s writing needs, I had to think back to my own writing. As a fluent adult writer, I notice that there are many inconstancies in the way that I was taught to write growing up. Throughout my educational career, writing was one of my most troubling subjects. I struggled with word choice, conventions and organization of my essays. I donot believe that I truly ever learned how to write properly. This has definitely had an effect on how I teach my students. Understanding how hard writing was for me growing up, I always try to teach writing in an exciting way that allows my students to truly absorb everything. This thought process was with me the whole time I was reading Alex’s essay. “How would I want to be taught? How can I make this lesson fun and accessible to him?” These questions allowed me to really think about ways to teach a student struggling with many of the traits of quality writing (Education Northwest, 2013) that I struggled with. One way that I could assist Alex is through the use of Microsoft word (Coskie & Hornof, 2013). Alex typed his essay in Microsoft word which leads me to believe that he might have some technology errors that might need to simply be addressed and not a main focus. Due to the fact that he has no access to technology outside of school, this could be a major factor behind 5
many of his errors within his essay. If there are still many errors within his Microsoft word use after a few lessons on technical needs, then lessons on which specific conventional errors Alex has will need to be addressed. One way to accomplish this is through the online keyboard games through Typetastic. (Typetastic, n.d.) Using typetasticwould allow me to gain insight into what symbols Alex knows and if he is using them properly. After Alex has leveled out of typetastic with an 85% or higher, I will move onto time 4 writing(Elementary School paragraph writing, n.d.). This website allows for students to practice writing paragraphs and their parts in order to develop structurally sound essays. These two uses of technology will help supplement the teaching that will occur within my one on one lessons with Alex. Within these one on one lessons, we will review what conventions are, how they are usedand work on implementing them in our writing properly. One way is to work on making convention corrections within pre-written sentences and paragraphs. Understanding where Alex struggles will be the most beneficial. Applying the lesson to pre-written texts will give me great