As we equip our students with the necessary skills to compete and become successful in a global economy, written communication becomes ever so much more important. As communication increases and technology advances, the ability to communicate through writing is central to achievement in school and the workplace. Therefore it is crucial for educators to provide students with the ability to clearly and concisely convey a message in writing. The purpose of this mixed method action research study was to investigate how the implementation of writer's workshop affected the students and teachers in District JV. The findings were obtained from writing sample rubric scores, teacher observations, student and teacher surveys, teacher interviews, and a parent focus group. These findings indicated that District JV students' overall ability to convey a message through writing had improved. Specifically, the students increased their variety of word choice, application of conventions, strength of voice, organization, and writing fluency. Both student attitude towards writing and teacher attitude towards teaching writing became more positive. The students enjoyed writing more at home and in school when they had the opportunity to choose their own topic, and when there was a social component to the writing process. District JV writing teachers were found to have a more positive attitude towards teaching writing after the implementation of writer's workshop and were displaying behaviors that coincided with writer's workshop philosophy. Finally, after the implementation of writer's workshop, teachers' instructional practices were found to employ the instructional practices of a writer's workshop mini-lesson on a consistent basis, used modeling to demonstrate writing strategies, implemented writer's workshop strategies across multiple curriculum areas, and incorporated the social components of writer's workshop into their teaching. The research concluded with recommendations to continue the program, continue professional development for teachers and parents, establish professional learning communities around book clubs, encourage teacher discussions about best instructional writing practices, establish a professional library, and generate more opportunities for students to interact across grade levels when writing.
|Advisor:||Mittricker, Margaret, Schumann, Jane|
|Commitee:||Crews, John, Roman, Margaret|
|School:||College of Saint Elizabeth|
|School Location:||United States -- New Jersey|
|Source:||DAI-A 73/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Achievement, Attitude, Instructional practice, Writer's workshop, Writing|
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