Have you ever been given an assignment or job to complete at work that made you feel uncomfortable? You were not quite sure how it was going to turn out and if you would successfully complete it?
That’s how eighth grade students felt before they were challenged by their teacher Monique Trauger with a project that gave them the opportunity to write creatively and freely.
“She asked her students to write about a time they started to care about something bigger than themselves…. It took some prodding, and some patience. But soon the stories started pouring out: weird stories, funny stories, difficult stories. As one student opened up, it prompted another to do the same.”
Reflection and Questions
- Why do you believe the assignment was so successful and why do you think children started to open up with their own assignments as other classmates did before them?
- What did you come to learn about the students in her class from the excerpts in the article?
- What were some of your reactions to their personal stories?
- How might this influence your own future interactions with student visitors?
- What could you take away from this article to put into practice with current or future activities and programs at your particular park?
Check out these TED Ed videos related to writing. What did you learn from the video? How might it relate to your own park?
Wolfman-Arent, Avi. “Say Anything: Inside a Writing Assignment Gone Right in North Philadelphia”. WHYY, 28 May 2018.