Thursday, November 11, 2010

Online "Silent Discussion" of Schlosser ii.9

Today, we're going to experiment with using our blogs to conduct a silent discussion of the reading -- in other words, a discussion that takes place entirely in writing.

Before you begin:

Before you begin, please move your seat so that there is an empty chair between you and the people next to you. If this is not possible, then change seats with someone in the class so that you are sitting next to people that you don't usually sit with.

Step One: Work up some ideas before you blog

  1. Think of a topic to write about: something you learned or that caught your interest as you read this chapter
  2. Choose a quotation to represent your topic
  3. Do a 5-minute free write on the topic using a word processor (or, if it works better for you, pen and paper)

Step Two: Post to your blog

Using your best organizational skills, write a 1-2 paragraph post on the topic for your blog. Briefly revise your post for development and style. Your post should:

  1. Define your topic in your own words
  2. Elaborate on your topic by stating why it interested you and why it should matter to your readers
  3. Introduce your quotation, give the quotation, and cite the quotation using MLA format
  4. Discuss the quotation in detail, "unpacking" its nuances -- the language of the quotation, its reasoning or logic -- and explaining what new insights or further ideas it provides regarding your topic
  5. Further elaborate on the topic as necessary

Step Three: Read and Comment on your classmates' blog posts

Remember, this is a discussion: you need to write substantive comments that bring new ideas and perspective into the mix or encourage your classmates (both the person blogging and other commentors) to elaborate on their ideas.

Your comments should:

  1. Respond to your classmates' statements and ideas by treating their post or comment just like any other source and trying to "unpack" it
  2. Raise questions about your classmates' statements and ideas
  3. Expand on the topic by introducing personal experience or knowledge from outside this class, explaining in each case what new insight or further ideas it provides

Step Four: Read and respond to the comments left on your blog

(See previous step for guidance on comments)

Jump back and forth between Steps Three and Four, conducting several discussions at once

No comments:

Post a Comment