One thing I did that makes me feel good about myself ... one habit this shows.

One of the things I did this weekend was to think and write (or at least begin to write) about the different discourse options that are available on Youth Voices. I found passages in James Moffett’s important book, Teaching the Universe of Discourse. Maybe I should collect those here.

Here’s something I wrote recently:

In Coming on Center (1981), James Moffett calls for students to be given what he describes as “an emotional mandate to play the whole symbolic scale, to find suspects and shape them, to invent ways to act upon others, and to discover their own voice.” For me, “Teaching the Universe of Discourse” (Moffett, 1968) has always been the goal for any curriculum, and providing spaces for youth to play across as much of the digital universe of discourse as possible has been our guiding light on Youth Voices

This summer, I’ve been building new places and refurbishing underutilized spaces for students to live inside of Youth Voices. I think we can look to Youth Voices to answer recent questions from colleagues on Teachers Teaching Teachers about how — in these times — to give our students opportunities be themselves and how to provide them with the tools they need to write for themselves, with each other, and for each other.
Here’s anothere quote: “ideally, a student would write because he was intent on saying something for real reasons of his own and because he wanted to get certain effects on a definite audience” (Moffett, 193, 1968)
Another (p. 28, 1968) “Generally, a student should learn to play freely the whole symbolic scale, and to know where he is on it at a given moment.”
So… I have a lot more to do to get these concepts a piece of writing that I will use on a playlist, but these ideas are bouncing around in my head right now, and that’s part of what I did this weekend.
The habit I’ve been using is Applying past history to new situations.
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Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License


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