Writing as a Process

Subject: Writing as a Process
From: Irene Wong <wongword -at- OZEMAIL -dot- COM -dot- AU>
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 1997 20:18:29 +1000

I made this same observation some years ago when John Brockman was
giving a presentation here at our ASTC conference in 1988 or 1989. He
commented that he found that this method of writing (ie group work etc)
did not work very well in Singapore.

This method has been used in primary schools in the state of New South
Wales, Australia for about 16 years now.

If you are interested in more informaiton on this method some background
information follows. I doubt that Katie Johnson, who ever she is,
developed this process. More likely she has written about it. Our
Primary English Teachers Association published a number of books about
this method in 1981-82. I purchased copies purely from a tech writers
point of view. Perhaps you might like to purchase Katie's book. It was
also described at the August 1980 Third International Conference on the
Teaching of English which was held here in Sydney.

This method was championed for primary children by Professor Doanld H
Graves in th Writing Process Laboratory in New Hampshire. This work was
done in the 1970s.

The first known genesis of this approach was in an article by Gordon s
Rohman in 1964, "Pre-writing". Donald M Murray extebnded the idea in his
1968 book "A Writer Teaches Writing" (Houghton Mifflin, 1968). He also
wrote in "Eight Approaches to Teaching Composition", (NCTE, Illinois,
1980). Janet Emig was the first to apply it to school writing inher 1971
research report"The composing processes of 12th graders". Thebn suddenly
there was Graves working with little children.

Time magazine gave Graves top billing in an article on 19 May 1980.
At one time Graves wrote the research column in "Language Arts" a
leading journal of primary English.


Irene Wong
Publishing Unit
Australian Securities Commission, Sydney

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