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How Do Children Develop as Writers?

Helping kids develop as writers

In the past, writing instruction depended primarily on evaluation and test taking. Teachers marked any spelling or grammar mistakes with unmistakable red ink. Each mistake lowered your grade, and teachers primarily assessed only grammar — few gave the same consideration to content. While there have been many improvements in teaching the writing process, educators still have much to learn.

Outdated Writing Instruction

Current research on the writing process has led to many changes. Issued by the National Council of Teachers of English, “Writing in the 21st Century” asserts the need for a new approach to teaching the writing process. The report finds that, historically, writing instruction closely ties writing to test taking and that content is a lower priority than grammar, syntax and structure.

Foundations of Child Literacy

An online Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction degree explores critical issues in teaching the writing process. The course Foundations of Literacy Learning in EC-6 classrooms takes a balanced approach to literacy and literacy instruction for grades EC-6. Students examine a variety of instructional strategies, effective program organization, assessment and classroom management. Fluency and comprehension, word study, and phonemic awareness are critical areas for the young learner. Foundations of Literacy Learning prepares teachers for the advanced study of teaching the writing process to children.

Developmental Influence on Child Literacy

Understanding developmental influences on child literacy is crucial. Another course offered in the University of Texas at Arlington’s online M.Ed. program, Pre-Adolescent and Adolescent Literacy, looks at developmental influences on children as readers and writers. The course addresses sociocultural influences on literacy as well as cognitive, linguistic and psychological factors. Students of the program design curricula for teaching reading and writing, including oral communication and digital literacy.

UTA’s online M.Ed. program equips teachers with research-based methods for developing students as writers. Teachers have come a long way in their approach to teaching writing, but there is still room for further development. In an online M.Ed. program in Curriculum and Literacy, today’s teachers have the opportunity to develop advanced, research-based writing instruction.

Learn more about the UTA online M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction – Literacy Studies.


NCTE: Writing in the 21st Century

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