Last year, after a lesson comparing formal and informal online writing, I asked GDS fifth graders to reflect on what they had learned. We also discussed the effect writing can have on a reading audience and the conclusions a reader just might form about a writer. To learn a bit about what we did, you can read my lesson overview, Writing Online — What to Think About.
Below are some student contributions to the conversation, written in response to my post on their fifth grade blog. These 21st Century learners understand the differences between various types of writing – but they need adult help when it comes to applying what they know as much as possible and adult commendation when they get it right. Parents of digital kids — take note.
A Few Student Reflections on Writing
- Writing online is hard because you might think it’s ok to say something with bad grammar or slang, but you never know who’s going to receive or read it.
- I think a good online writing skill is to be careful of what you type. When you are typing online, make it better by reading it over and checking your work. Ask a family member or a friend to read over it and check if it has mistakes.
- Good ideas, capital letters, punctuation, and strong grammar all help to create good writing.
- I think you should know your audience. If you’re writing is for a serious assignment you should make your writing serious, and if you’re writing for a humorous audience you should make your writing funny and you can use slang.
- It’s important to have good online writing because people can judge who you are, based on your online writing. And anyone can see your writing.
- It depends. Who are you writing for? Maybe it is OK to use slang if it is a close friend who will understand it. For example if it is to a teacher or adult, you should try to not use slang.
- If you are the kind of person whose words just slip out of your mouth, you should always go over what you write.
- It is very important to be careful of what you write and make sure that you are not accidentally saying bad or unkind things. To prevent typos a good tip might be to be sure to read your stuff over!
- I think that you should always double-check your comments before putting them out in the world.
- To improve your writing, try to add something that will make your readers think. Maybe you could ask a question.
- If you are mad and you write something mean it can cause a problem. Always re-read and imagine how the other person will feel.
- You should have interesting writing. I think good writing would have really cool facts about things, places, or people. People should also write what interests them so readers can probably find something new about that person or subject.
- I think that slang is OK if people know what you are talking doesn’t know what that means, they might think it is something bad. But be careful! If you send a message to a bunch of people, and you use slang or make a typo — you might be embarrassed.