Teaching English

The 11th grade daughter of a friend of mine has not written a single essay in class this year, despite her love for writing. No essay has been assigned or even suggested. Instead she has made a poster, designed a CD cover, done a diorama, and created a tee-shirt. She is upset and so are her parents.

When my friend told me about this she expected me to be horrified, as all her other friends were.

I wasn’t. I’ve seen it too many times to be shocked anymore. When you teach freshman English at the local community college you see a great many freshmen who have never had to write a paper in their four years of high school. So why would I be amazed that some 11th grade English teacher thinks a diorama is better for her students? She’s not alone. Unfortunately.

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