There is no argument that growing up in the digital era, solely dependent on the technological interaction with our peers, that we as students struggle with academic writing. A lot of times when assigned research papers it’s like pulling teeth to write. I become extremely stressed about the assignment and usually procrastinate to avoid the anxiety. However, because we DO live in a digital and social world there are endless possibilities to learning and teaching that can spice up a traditional class.
Recently I read the article “Blogs vs. Term papers” by Matt Richtel. In this article Richtel talks about the stress term papers bring students and teachers and also discusses the arguments (pros/cons) of using a social media based classroom.
In the article I find myself asking “WHAT?!?”. William H. Fitzhugh protests against moving away from rigorous academic writing, and believes the solution is not blogs but more reading. Fitzhugh also proposes what he calls the “page a year” solution: in first grade, a one-page paper using one source; by fifth grade, five pages and five sources. –again WHAT!? Could you imagine being responsible to write a five page paper with sources before even completing middle school. I do agree that our generation has shied away from reading and extensive writing, but this method might just be a little too extreme.
Personally I really enjoy this style teaching. (Teaching in a more interactive environment) I believe by using tools that students already use, like blogs, can be an enriching way to teach. I agree that blogging is less stressful. I actually think that having classes with blogs are a refreshing change. - 1.) I do not feel the urge to OD on coffee or wake up wishing I could just have an IV of caffeine. 2.) I learn more with constant feedback on my work. 3.) Students have the chance to be the teacher. – I agree that students should have some scene of academic writing but outside of school when is this relevant to most people. I think Professor Davidson had the right idea by using blogs and teaching students cover letters, business letters, and have them write short stories and essays about their chosen careers.