Leaving Only Footprints

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Students often want to sell back their textbooks, which makes them hesitant to write in them. Challenge students to develop a system for personalizing their handbooks that leaves them unmarked. You might suggest they use sticky notes or paper clips in different colors, with each color serving a different purpose: red for their most common errors, blue for things to check when working on a draft, green for tools they use in revision. Form students into small groups and have each group bring to the next class a system for “leaving only footprints” in the textbook while making it easy for each student to find the sections she or he needs.
About the Author
Barclay Barrios is an Associate Professor of English and Director of Writing Programs at Florida Atlantic University, where he teaches freshman composition and graduate courses in composition methodology and theory, rhetorics of the world wide web, and composing digital identities. He was Director of Instructional Technology at Rutgers University and currently serves on the board of Pedagogy. Barrios is a frequent presenter at professional conferences, and the author of Emerging.