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Teacher/novelist Michele Dunaway writes, "as much as I preach individual choice in reading, I do believe there should be some literary works that everyone in middle and high school reads and experiences." Here Michele shares some of her favorite teaching touchstones.  Continue reading...
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Michele Dunaway, a teacher of English and journalism, writes: "In our haste to have students prep for standardized tests, English education has left behind a very important area: writing the letter."  Continue reading...
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(Read part one of "The Nitty-Gritty Essay" here.)

I'm not sure what the deal is, but people have a fixation with five-paragraph essays. It's as if five is some magical number that a good essay must have. However, that couldn't be further from the truth. Some essays simply aren't worth five paragraphs, and can suffice with three or even four paragraphs. Some need ten or more. For those writers who struggle with composition, it's what's in the paragraphs that counts, and how long the paragraphs are.  Continue reading...
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Okay, let's be honest. I'll go on record and say it. Some students are naturally more gifted at writing essays than others. Oftentimes these are the students to whom writing simply springs forth. It doesn't matter if it's narrative, persuasive, expository or descriptive, these students' paragraphs simply flow and their choice of words seems innate. These students naturally gravitate to the honors level classes, expanding their essays in ways that make teachers' eyes tear up with joy.  Continue reading...
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The past week or so, while I wrestled with trying to tackle another column on the five-paragraph essay, I found myself monitoring all those little things I say in class. So, as the school year begins to rev up into high gear, I thought maybe something more lighthearted would be fun.  Continue reading...
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Teacher/novelist Michele Dunaway has some provocative thoughts on how essay-writing is traditionally taught to students.

For a site that thrives on vocabulary and words, the idea that the essay must die may be akin to blasphemy. We writers often cite the essay as our first foray into discovering our individual voice; it's our first official step towards being able to express ourselves through prose.  Continue reading...
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Teachers, are you wary of using social media and other online tools to foster student communication? Follow these tips from Michele Dunaway, who teaches English and journalism at Francis Howell High School in St. Charles, Missouri (when she's not writing best-selling romance novels).  Continue reading...
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2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 29-35 of 41 Articles