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  • ISBN/ISSN(s):
    0007-8204

Description

Editorial: Embracing the And
Shea Kerkhoff

The Value of English: Perspectives on the Economic Benefits of Studying English in High School
Ross Collin and Clay Aschliman
Abstract: This exploratory study investigates English education professors’ beliefs about the economic value of studying English language arts (ELA). In response to a 44-item, cross-sectional survey, 140 professors clarified their beliefs about which economic benefits are and should be offered in high school ELA classes; how ELA classes are and should be designed to deliver those benefits; how much curricular attention is and should be given to economic benefits compared to other components of ELA; and whether ELA’s economic benefits should receive more attention in the future. The article identifies patterns in professors’ thinking about the economic payoff of ELA. These patterns are read against five common models of ELA’s economic value. The article concludes with a discussion of what respondents’ answers suggest about competing conceptions of the organization and purposes of ELA and K–12 schools.

Prospective English Teachers Learn to Respond to Diversity in Students’ Writing through the Student Writing Archive Project (SWAP)
Michael B. Sherry
Abstract: Responding to students’ writing is integral to English teaching. However, preservice secondary English teachers (PSETs) often have few opportunities to practice this skill or to see how experienced teachers respond to diverse writers. I built an online database of students’ writing, teacher feedback, and teacher interviews; 32 PSETs in my English methods courses explored this database in conjunction with fieldwork in local classrooms. In this article, I analyze PSETs’ database discussion forum posts, comments on field-placement students’ writing, and reflections about learning to provide feedback. Reading teachers’ feedback positioned PSETs as students, evoking recollections about receiving teacher feedback, while writing their own feedback positioned them as teachers, evoking visions of what a writing teacher must do/be to claim authority in the classroom. All but two PSETs provided feedback of the kind they had claimed to hate. Those two adapted approaches they encountered in the database, learning to draw on their own writing histories as resources for responding with authority.

Provocateur Piece: The Paper Bag
Christina Berchini
Abstract: In this creative nonfiction essay, the author recounts her first day of school and earliest experience with being publicly embarrassed by a school teacher; this event is one of her few memories of kindergarten. Now a literacy teacher educator, she understands and describes how this early experience with schooling was marked by a probable cultural mismatch. This piece has the potential to foster conversations in teacher education and literacy classrooms about the assumptions that shape teachers’ expectations for the funds of knowledge that students may (or may not) bring to the classroom.

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Index to Volume 49