So what about the writers?
Composition is a mandatory class that is required by law to be taken by all 7th grade students, and I intend to use this opportunity to display my “smarts” to the best of my ability, but I can’t help but question the things that we are taught in composition class. Is challenging a teacher a good thing to do? I’m not sure but I’m a risk-taker, and considering that you barely know me, I haven’t really got much to lose. So I’ll make my feelings clear. I do not think that people can be taught to be “good writers”. Following 6+1, (although a generally good system) doesn’t make your writing necessarily good, but it usually makes it just like everyone else’s.
First, let’s talk conventions. I gladly adhere to most convention rules, like periods and capital letters. Where would we be without them? Well, our writing would probably look SOMETHINGLIKETHEANCIENTROMANS. That was hard to read wasn’t it? That’s why we have convention rules. So that we can read things in a way that everyone can understand and read simply and easily. Conventions can be taught, and easily adhered to. Conventions are either wrong or right. No Questions asked. But others of the 6+1 traits are not so easily judged.
Voice. Definitely the most difficult to grade, read, understand, etc. of all writing traits. For the most part, this is due to the reason that writing is such a personal thing, (unless it’s expository of course). I’ve always thought that the way that I write is the way that I would talk if I had enough time. I always use “big words” when writing things, especially for teachers, because I’m not afraid of them calling me a “walking dictionary” like my friends would. (Sounds like a compliment, but I don’t take it that way.) I just realized that this is probably one of the strangest papers that I’ve ever written. Haha! What do you do about that? Spontaneous interjection of thought: should you take off for organization, or consider that good voice since being spontaneous is part of my personality? Are you beginning to see the faults in the system? I hope that you are.
Word choice is actually one of the simplest 6+1 writing traits to carry out “effectively” but gets on my nerves the most. One reason is that, just like “good writing” itself, word choice is occasionally just a matter of preference. Personally, I think that writing that is dotted with far too many extravagant words can sometimes just take from the nature of the writing. Fancy words and the kind of voice that one in particular would like to read, just can’t be shoved down kids’ throats. I use a lot of big words, because they naturally make sense to me. I’ve always had a big vocabulary, and I don’t jam big, fancy words in my writing just to please someone. But not everyone has a big vocabulary. Big words don’t come naturally to everyone. But it doesn’t mean that they’re bad writers.
One last thing I’d like to tackle, editing, revising, and pre-planning. The idea of these things absolutely causes me to cringe. For one thing, I don’t edit. I just don’t. Once I write something, it’s set in stone, and I won’t go back on it unless it was a conventional error. Pre-planning is my largest issue with writing, as writing just flows naturally with me, and frankly, it makes writing seem like a science, and not an art. I really lose a part of writing through pre-planning, and although it nearly killed me, (okay that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but you get the point) I forced myself to pre-plan this paper, because it was required. But I think the artful part of writing is somehow lost track of, even with all of that organization and planning.
Well hooray, you’ve nearly finished my rant on the imperfections of how writing is perceived in public schooling! But don’t misunderstand my intentions, I don’t mean to be a miser, just to bring my ideas forward, and maybe shake you up a little. I would put a smiley face here, but you would take points off for that.