My blog title is a little misleading. We haven’t yet tweeted these out via our classroom Twitter account, but we will be doing that next week. (Here is our Twitter account: https://twitter.com/norristigers)
On Friday, as we started nearing the ending phase of a student research project around an inquiry theme of their choosing that has been underway for the past two weeks, I had them do some reflection on how things have been going. One of their tasks was to write a summary of their project — in less than 15 words. This gave me an opportunity to talk again about summary writing, about focusing on the center of a piece of writing without the extraneous material and thinking that comes along with it, about synthesizing an idea to its core. It’s also the perfect Tweet-sized blast of an idea, right?
Some students really struggled with this (I set it up with 15 boxes and the instructions were to use only those boxes — one per word — and no more. It could be less than 15 words, however). Others found the confines of word liberating, in a way. It’s funny how different activities bring out various strengths and weaknesses in them as writers.
Here are some of the research sentences summaries that students wrote:
“Fast food should be healthy food in the United States.” — Shea
“Solar-powered cars will help the world if we invest in them.” — Ryan
“Marine animals have been driven out of their homes due to high mercury levels.” — Isaac
“More recess means more activities and less obese people because they get more exercise.” — David
“Ethanol is efficient but it would decimate our food supply and farmers could go bankrupt.” — Andrew
“Overfishing is a driving pressure that has devastating impacts on marine ecosystems.” — Nick
“Health care costs too much for people to afford.” — Colin
“Gas prices in America and China are too high and we need to lower them.” — Greg
I think they did a pretty good job and their papers and research inquiries are coming along nicely (if slowly).
Peace (in the tweet),