We are a professional association of teachers of English as a Second Language in Minnesota and neighboring states dedicated to the education and support of students acquiring English at all levels of public and private education.
All three of our writing projects have allowed me to develop these critical thinking skills outlined by the textbook. In all three writing projects, I had to focus on inquiry. The first writing assignment required me to inquire about the First Amendment and its impact on journalists. In order to do this, I had to learn about the subject and communicate with a journalist from Tucson News Now. The second writing project also emphasized this because I was required to think critically about both movie codes and determine which of the two was most appropriate for movies today. The third writing project encompassed inquiry, learning, thinking, and communicating. With this project, I had to inquire and learn about the Libertarian Party, think about and research the possible causes and effects of this party, and communicate them in a magazine-like setting.
I gained the most knowledge about the second bullet point while working on the first and third writing projects. The first writing project, in which I explored the First Amendment, allowed me to recognize the importance of writing as a series of tasks. First, I was required to find information and analyze its meaning. Then, I had to take the information I had gathered and combine it with the information from my interview with a Tucson journalist. The third writing project also emphasized this concept that writing is a series of tasks. I learned to gather information on the Libertarian Party, analyze its meaning, and come to a conclusion based on a variety of sources.
Of the writing assignments, the third one is the one in which I learned most about integrating my ideas with those of others. This assignment was very different from projects I have done in the past because it took into account different perspectives. The use of different perspectives taught me how to integrate my ideas with those from both credible online sources and from a personal interview. From that writing project, I truly learned how to combine different ideas into a single essay.