Snippets from Jeff Anderson

Here are some of the gems I gleaned from my day with Jeff Anderson (6th grade teacher, author of Mechanically Inclined and Everyday Editing). If you do not understand the previous sentence, see yesterday’s slice:

  • What are we doing to make students think they can’t do it? (grammar and editing)
  • Does the error hawks swoop in with red pen talons? (with caw, caw sound effects) Loved this image, I can see some  teachers I had in this role.
  •  Student’s errors reveal what they are ready to learn next. (example: run-on sentences indicate they are ready to learn about complex sentences)
  • Focus on patterns of language, considering what grammar and mechanics can do to create meaning, instead of rules of grammar and mechanics. (there are too many exceptions to the rules)
  • Grammar taught in isolation has a negative effect (which means the student actually loses knowledge!) This is a scary thought!
  • Find the smallest chunk possible to teach the concept (don’t teach from a paragraph to develop sentence structure)
  • Students need confidence to develop competence.  Isn’t this true for everything we do? So why would  grammar and mechanics be an exception?
  • After a read aloud (book or passage) ask the students “If this was written from a prompt, what could the prompt have been to create this piece?” Think about this, this is not asking for author’s purpose. This could open kids eyes to how you can develop a piece from a prompt.

Technical blogging question not related to slice, but if you know, I’d take some help. How do you change the font or color of the font? I wanted my personal thoughts in another color but I can’t find any way to do that. Does someone know the trick? So I had to make my thoughts italics. Total novice on how to do things on the blog. I did find something about a font toolkit, but nothing happens when I click it.

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8 thoughts on “Snippets from Jeff Anderson

  1. Janay says:

    Look at you, Elsie!! You are inspiring others! You’ve actually been doing that for years. I’m impressed!
    Your best friend, Janay

  2. I love the last tip you wrote – about naming the author’s prompt. I find that when I’m blogging, I often have to think – now what was my original prompt for this post?
    Tip for changing ink color – since I see you blog on WordPress, there is a symbol on the “kitchen sink” tool bar that lets you change font color – not font (sadly) but color. If you can’t find it, check out their “supports” page – lots of help there!

  3. Christy says:

    I especially enjoyed your parenthetical comments (most especially the caw caw).

    You inspired my slice for today!

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