One of the goals of the Teaching Writing specialization has been to help every learner consider ways to adapt what they are learning and apply it to their specific situation, needs and interests. The theories, strategies and practices presented in these courses are sound, and can work with any student of any age and skill level, provided each learner is able to adapt their learning and apply it to their specific students, current or future. In this final project, learners will select one component from each of the four courses that are among the most important things they learned from that course. They will describe what these components are, explain why they are important to the learner, and create a plan for incorporating that new learning into their teaching or their own writing going forward.
Module 1: Reflecting on Your Learning
One of the goals of the Teaching Writing specialization has been to help every learner consider ways to adapt what they are learning and apply it to their specific situation, needs and interests, and in this final project, you’ll apply your learning to your current or future teaching. The project consists of a series of writings. In this first module, you’ll select four of the most valuable takeaways you have gained from these courses. In subsequent modules, you'll construct learning objectives, create a lesson plan that you could use in your classes, and finally, you'll evaluate this specialization as if you were the designer and instructor. The project is separated into four modules, with a peer review assignment in each module.
Lesson Plan, Part 1: Learning Objectives
The most significant assignment in this final project is a lesson plan you will create. We'll focus on lesson plans in module 3, but for now, we'll start by looking at learning objectives: what you want your students to learn from the lessons you teach.
Creating a Lesson Plan
When I first started teaching, my greatest fear was, What am I going to do with these students for an hour every day? How will I fill up the time? Soon enough, I realized there was more than enough to do, and in fact, an hour a day wasn’t enough time to cover everything I wanted to include. But in those early days, the most welcome tool I discovered was the lesson plan. Through lesson plans, I could map out the day or the week or the month ahead and feel confident that I was teaching my students the most important things I believed they needed to learn. Of course, no class ever followed one of my lesson plans perfectly, and flexibility – learning to adjust on the fly – is one of the most valuable attributes for teachers to have. But the lesson plan gave me a map that helped me and my students reach the desired destination. I still use them, all these many years later. In this module, you’ll create a lesson plan based on some topic discussed in one or more of the courses in this specialization that you could use with your current or future students. This lesson plan will be most major assignment of this final project, and you’ll have lots of time to work on it.
A Final Evaluation
Now congratulations really are in order! You’re just one step away from completing the Teaching Writing Specialization. My final request is for you to help me evaluate these courses you have just completed, with an eye toward making them as effective, valuable, and relevant as possible for the learners who follow you.