The Center for Writing Studies

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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Colloquium Archive

Rebecca Woodard

Name: Rebecca Woodard, Curriculum & Instruction

Presentation Title: “Creative Writing, Blogging, and Teaching Writing: A Sociocultural Account of Trajectories of Teacher Practice”

Date: February 7, 2013

Abstract

Although the idea that “writing teachers must write” is pervasive, little is known about how teachers’ participation in out-of-school literacy practices shapes their instruction. To date, most research on teacher practice has been limited to either classrooms or professional development sites. This talk broadens the study of teacher practice by moving beyond classroom walls with Lisa, a middle school Language Arts teacher, and Aaron, a high school English teacher. As I follow both teachers out from their classrooms—Lisa into her creative writing group, and Aaron across his participation in a local National Writing Project Summer Institute and various online writing spaces—I identify ways teachers’ literacy practices both inform and disrupt their identities, discourses, and teaching practices. This research reconceptualizes what it means to be a writing teacher and how to understand and research teacher development from a sociocultural practice perspective.