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  Weekly Feature (April 15, 2007)

Teaching the "Write" Way (Update)


Last October, I wrote a feature on the Writing 12 class, outlining my plans for a "hybrid" that combines both creative writing and journalism. At the time, we were deeply immersed in learning to tell stories.

Now, as we near the end of the course in June, the students have begun to publish an online newspaper, The Pearson Buzz. The process we've gone through to get to this point has been exhilarating (and a bit exhausting, I'll admit).

Has it been worth it? Well, when students began to wonder what would happen to their paper after the class ended, I knew we'd done something special. And this week, students in my English 11 and 12 classes are writing for publication, too.

Not a guaranteed publication, however. The students in Writing 12 will have to decide on which articles are most worthy of a wider audience. With the assistance of Google Analytics, I can show my students that (to date) they have had readers in Riyadh, Tianjin, Seoul and Phoenix; most importantly, the majority of readers are in New Westminster, Burnaby, Vancouver, Coquitlam . . .

Giving the students a voice within their own community, a unique one that includes adults from every continent on Earth, seems to me an essential part of what makes our program, part of what is called Community Education in our part of the world, meaningful.

If you are a current student at the PALC, I urge you to consider making the next year of Writing 12 (beginning in September 2007 and concluding in June 2008) even better!



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