Tiny Teaching Stories: Student Teaching

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Today's Tiny Teaching Story is by Pamela Childers, a lifelong secondary, undergraduate and graduate school educator, writer, editor, and consultant. She enjoys collaborating with colleagues and students.


Student Teaching

“Go wash your mouth out with soap!” And he did. The 8th grader returned to our grammar lesson in progress, raised his hand, and bubbled out the next answer. In Biology class, I distributed apples and asked, “Who can identify the internal parts you just dissected?” And they all did, delighted to eat their half apples. Rushing to my senior English class to discuss the Romantic poets, I passed a student at his open locker pulling out a knife. “May I have that, please?” And he handed it to me. Things were much different in 1965, I have learned. 


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About the Author
Nancy Sommers, who has taught composition and directed writing programs for more than thirty years, now teaches in Harvard’s Graduate School of Education. A two-time Braddock Award winner, Sommers is well known for her research and publications on student writing. Her articles “Revision Strategies of Student and Experienced Writers” and “Responding to Student Writing” are two of the most widely read and anthologized articles in the field of composition. She has also created three films—Shaped by Writing, Across the Drafts, and Beyond the Red Ink—to bring the voices of student writers into a larger discussion about writing instruction. Nancy Sommers is currently the coauthor of Diana Hacker’s best-selling handbooks: The Bedford Handbook, A Writer’s Reference, Rules for Writers, A Pocket Style Manual, and Writer’s Help (see hackerhandbooks.com). Her newest instructor resource, Responding to Student Writers, offers a model for thinking about response as a dialogue between students and teachers.