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What patterns can be seen in the planning episodes? How does this episode compare to other instances of collaborative planning? There are a number of ways in which teach- ers can elicit reflections from their students. All of us in the project are conducting our own inquiries: asking questions, collecting data, and using that data for reflection and interpretation as we write about our discoveries. We are each trying out collaborative planning in our class- rooms and conducting a focused investigation into some aspect of writing or learning.
All of us make strong use of collaborative plan- ning and writing in our own inquiries. We work in collaborative planning pairs or groups to plan our studies and our writing, and we reflect upon our own planning. We use writing as a way of making sense of what we are finding and as a way of recording the inquiry process, particularly in the discovery i need help writing a compare and contrast essay memos we produce. These discovery memos move us toward our final discovery paper. The papers for 1989- 90 make up this casebook, but some of them have traces of discoveries made during the previous year, which was the pilot year.
Donaldson, who entered the project during the pilot year, shows how the question that he asked this past academic year builds upon work that he did previously. Her data from journals, surveys, predictions, observations, and interviews help uncover sonte pat- terns associated with their acceptance or rejection of collaborative planning. It is interesting to notf- the importance of meta- phors in our discoveries.
Michael Benedict makes readers very aware of his own search for "the right metaphor," which results in his discovering an impor- tant distinction between collaborative planning ses- sions that are "mirror sessions" and those that are "window sessions. Another goal for our project is for the project itself to be reflective — for us to study ourselves collectively.
Together we study the process of collabo- ration that is manifested in the project, and it becomes an object for our reflection. In such an approach participants are both the conductors and the subjects of inquiry. To trace the process that is our own project, we collect various kinds of data, some of which are quite similar to those that we use with our students. For instance, project participants write re- sponse statements at the end of all of our seminars. We also use all the individual discovery memos to keep track of the various dimensions of planning and writ- ing that participants are exploring.
These sources of data are used in planning project activities. In addition to the more quali tati ve data, we are also collecting Writing Attitude Surveys (developed by project participants) from all students who are being taught collaborative planning through this project. These surveys ask students to indicate the extent of their agreement to thirty state- ments about writing, planning, and collaborative pro- cesses. Students take the survey at the Ixjginning and at the end of their course.
Indicators we record include such things as our presentations, publications, and contacts. We present papers at regional and na- tional conferences, such as the Western Pennsylvania Teachers of English, the top rated essay writing services National Council of Teachers of English, and the Conference on College Composition and Comn. Although individual participants in the project conduct inquiry focused on particular ques- tions and they report their discoveries, there are always unexpected discoveries, which are not the subject of any inquiry but are relevant to theproject. For instance, one group of young people decided, on their own, to use collaborative planning when they started on a new assignment.
Secondly, I want to argue that what we are seeing in these snapshots is not a cumulative progression heading toward an answer, but is in fact a cycle of theory and interpretation which guides observations, which top rated essay writing services in turn lead to renewed, more informed, more focused observation which can both test, build on, or go beyond our previous understanding. In both these settings, prior research and theory plays an essential role.
It opens our assumptions and actions up to fresh examination.
And it helps us top rated essay writing services explain our own successes in more principled ways. Collaborative Classroom Inquiry The cycle of interpretation I am calling observa- tion-based theory building plays an important, in some ways defining, role in our project in a number of ways.
First, unlike some other, equally valuable ways teacher research can be structured, tWs is a collaborative in- quiry.
And, ironically, it nurtures diversity by allowing teachers from different disciplines, with di- verse student populations and sharply divergent teaching goals to not only speak with one another, but to contribute to a growing shared understanding. Having shared knowledge, assumptions, and ex- pectations does not, however, mean we begin with a belief that these initial assumptions are correct or rel- evant to our different settings, or that our expectations (and even hopes) will pan out, or that our hypotheses are the accurate ones. This shared knowledge func- tions as a springboard for inquiry. It sets an agenda for questioning and observation that is also common prop- erty, in the sense that what you discover is probably relevant to me too.
For instance, what makes a good supporter and what do students (9th grade or college) need to learn to help other writers? At the same time, because we are interested in what Collins has called "situated cognition" eachmemberof this group frames his or her own inquiry in terms of a particular class top rated essay writing services and set of goals. Five Snapshots from Research According to Coleridge, Kubla Khan was written in a "profound sleep" in which all the images rose up before him as things, with a parallel production of correspondent expression. However, most texts do not spring fully realized from a spark of inspiration but emerge over time from acts of planning and revision— from the thinking writ- ers do at the keyboard, in the shower, or on the way to work or school The following snapshots from research describe certain strategies writers use that seem to make a critical difference in their writing and some of the insights which helped shape the features of col- laborative planning. Notice how the notes are complete sentences, which appear in the final text with little change in wording or order. These young writers do not distin- guish between planning (e.
Using a knowledge telling strategy to compose, they also found it hard to believe that anyone would think of an idea and then not top rated essay writing services use it. They are starting to transform their planning notes in various ways by rearranging, expanding and condensing. Bereiter and Scardamalia (1987) described thesechanges as a growth in conceptual planning—in the ability to differentiate plans from text, to use abstract ideas, and to consider alternatives for thinking about writing.