Content-Area Literacy Teaching Writing

A Snapshot of Writing Instruction in Middle Schools and High Schools



“The snapshot of writing instruction presented here looks quite different from the picture that emerged in 1979–80. In 1979–80, students were typically provided with a question to be answered in a page or less, with instruction taking place after the fact, in the comments and responses that teachers offered on completed work. In contrast, teachers today report emphasizing a variety of research-based instructional practices (Graham and Perin), including clearly specifying what is required in a particular type of writing, teaching specific strategies for pre-writing, writing, and revision, using models of successful responses for students to analyze, critique, and emulate, and treating computers and word processors as important tools that support students’ learning to write.”