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Cognitive Linguistic Explorations of Writing in the Classroom

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Rod E. Case, Gwendolyn M. Williams and Peter Cobin

Research into the analysis of classroom-based writing is replete with techniques and methods meant to bring clarity to the question of how to best conduct instruction and assessment. Findings and suggestions for practice are rooted in a philosophy that asks teachers and linguists to judge students’ writing against a pre-determined standard. Too often, the results do little more than inform teachers and researchers as to which students met the standard and which did not.

This book offers research into the analysis of classroom writing that does not use a set standard or rubric to assess student writing but instead relies on insights from cognitive linguistics to explore the connections between cognition and language in student writing. The result is a creative and linguistically driven analysis of classroom writing that allows the linguist or teacher to view student writing on its own terms.

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Chapter 2 Models of Writing Instruction

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Chapter 2

Models of Writing Instruction

This chapter examines the types of extended writing instruction to provide insight into how writing is traditionally produced in content area classrooms. Writing instruction is receiving more emphasis due to the ascent of the Common Core State Standards which require students to expand their language capabilities in connection with a greater degree of sophistication in their use of discourse across all content areas (Coker, Jennings, Farley-Ripple, & MacArthur, 2018; Hakuta, Santos, & Fang, 2013). From such a mandate, extended writing has become salient to every content area and grade level in the K-12 setting (Graham & Harris, 2015). Beyond the K-12 context, extended writing remains a staple of university courses as students write in composition and content area classes (Fernandez, Peyton, & Schaetzel, 2017). Therefore, the chapter begins with a brief description of extended writing. The chapter next explores the effectiveness and appropriacy of these steps across age and English language proficiency levels. The chapter then transitions to an exploration of how writing models can be used to analyze student writing before concluding with an examination of the factors that influence the choice of writing pedagogy.

Extended Writing

As students learn to write in school, they are taught the skills and procedures needed to create text for the purposes of extended writing. Extended writing exercises concentrate the student’s attention on producing, synthesizing, appraising, and connecting concepts in order to yield a greater level of understanding (Hebert,...

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