Tiny Teaching Stories: Video Conference

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Today's Tiny Teaching Story is by Jennifer Gray, Professor of English and Director of the Writing Center at the College of Coastal Georgia.


Video Conference

The student requested a video conference on Easter Sunday at 4pm. I said yes, because it was what he selected. I grumbled privately, as it was the only day without something work-related scheduled. I left celebrations at my neighbor’s house, much to our dismay, and logged in, expecting a blank black box. Instead, there he was, with a smile, a Zoom wave, and his Walmart uniform and nametag, calling from the front seat of his car on his break during his shift on a holiday. We talked about our assignment. He revised his citing practices, and I revised my negativities.



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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.