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Authentic Writing Essay

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My well-worn sneakers paced the ground beneath them with a syncopated rhythm that communicated to the rest of the world, “I’m on a mission!” The black sole meets the dirt path with fervor as the leaves and dirt dissipate from behind me forging lines in the dirt like a red path from a navigation screen. I have always enjoyed running outdoors in Colorado. The cool breeze provides redemptive counsel for my stress, and my heart churns the thin air into my body—beat by rhythmic beat blood involuntarily pulsates through my veins. I control the course, and I control the pace—an orchestrated masterpiece of muscle movement, breath and rhythm and I am its conductor. Just like the euphoric experience I get each time I lace up my worn sneakers for a run, students have the opportunity to navigate through their own beaten-path journey by using authentic writing.
Authentic writing is writing whereby writers are allowed to choose their topic, have an unlimited amount of time, length, and are encouraged to use resources. Writers work independently, and confer with peers and the teacher through a task that is reflective of both the skills they have learned in the past, and those being taught by the instructor using minilessons and their own topic. It is the best method to use to build students into better writers. At times, it can provide intimate glimpses into the lives of the students. Writing is a process that is complex, so writers engaged in producing authentic writing take advantage of their own processes which can prove to be unpredictable, yet rewarding. Most writing teachers would agree with Carl Nagin when he states that, “Writing doesn’t take shape all at once in fluent sentences and organized paragraphs. The more complex the subject...


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...ew is of the brick wall in front of me. My senses are not engaged, and the uninspiring drumming of my feet against the belt cannot be drowned out by the music on my iPod. This experience paroles in comparison to my outdoor runs. Yet, in the end, the result is the same—I get exercise and finish my mile count and my 20 min, a little disappointed, but still accomplishing something. However, my accomplishment fades when the belt stops, the lights on the treadmill fade and I the soles of my shoes rest on the multi-colored high traffic carpet. Students must have this same sense of apathy during their formulaic writing. It doesn’t engage their background knowledge; it has a start point and end point and everybody runs the same course. Writing should be a journey, and by developing authentic writing assessments students are exposed to choice and freedom in their writing.



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