First and foremost, and most inclusively, anyone fascinated by thinking and learning about connections between brain research and writing should read The Write Mind for Every Classroom: How to Connect Brain Science and Writing Across the Disciplines. Teachers of writing across a wide range of grade levels will find this book useful, especially those teaching adolescents. The information and activities are designed for those teaching across secondary and post-secondary content areas. As writing becomes increasingly central across all content areas as a result of both federal and state mandates such as the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), this book will be useful to all teachers of adolescents. College and university professors will find this book useful in helping to prepare today’s pre-service teachers. Literacy coaches, principals, and mentor/lead teachers will find much of value, as will educators involved in teacher learning groups. As brain-based education enters the national spotlight it becomes increasingly important for educators at all levels to become intelligent consumers of brain-based claims that have a potentially far-reaching impact on student learning.
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Jason Wirtz is associate professor of English Education and Rhetoric & Composition at Hunter College, City University of New York. His research focuses on translating the practices of accomplished writer-teachers for secondary and post-secondary writing instruction.Review:
I have never observed Dr. Wirtz teaching, but if the insightful and well-documented classroom activities he offers in The Write Mind for Every Classroom are any indication, he must be very good, indeed. I highly recommend this book to writing teachers at all levels and in all subject areas for the activities it offers as well as for the clear articulation of how the activities he recommends connect to brain studies and writing. (Patrick Bizzaro, author of Responding to Student Poems: Applications of Critical Theory and Composing Ourselves as Writer-Teacher-Writers: Starting with Wendy Bishop)
Professor Wirtz’s debut pedagogical writing text is fantastic for both pre- and in-service teachers alike. Offering an accessible overview of brain-based research and its impact on adolescent writers, Wirtz provides perspectives from real writers in the field and ways in which teachers can integrate a variety of practical, engaging, and student-centered instructional writing activities to any content area classroom. (Jody Polleck, Associate Professor in Adolescent Literacy at Hunter College and 10th grade English at New Design High School in New York City)
As a middle school principal, I understand and appreciate the challenges associated with adolescents engaging in authentic and positive writing experiences. Jason Wirtz provides a detailed look at the brain science behind how to help organically navigate a young learner into unlocking his or her potential to start thinking like a writer. This book also provides an extensive menu of “just in time” lesson ideas to help a beginning educator and also add to a seasoned teacher’s bag of instructional tools to use in the classroom. (Jason Myatt, Middle School Principal in Plano Intermediate School District, Plano, Texas)
Finally! A book that helps educators with strategies for writing across all curriculums that provides us with clear rational of brain based learning. Dr. Wirtz puts together an outstanding product for all teachers. A must-read to help your students and teachers throughout their writing process. (Ryan Fink, 8th grade science teacher, Holt Junior High School, Holt, Michigan)
This book opens up exciting new vistas on the teaching of writing by illuminating neuroscientific bases of writing activity. Targeting adolescent writers, Wirtz effectively offers practical strategies for writing across the disciplines informed by a knowledge of brain processes. (Professor Suzanne Nalbantian, author of Memory in Literature and Editor of The Memory Process: Neuroscientific and Humanistic Perspectives)
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