Project 1

Writing Class


We have paid careful attention to differences in how students are taught to write. Jean Anyon's work has been useful because it forced us to think about the meaning of "class" in the United States. Her work also made us think about the different kinds of education available in this county. The connections between class and education have been the focus of our work.

Our key terms include the following: class, socio-economic status, standardization, training, critical pedagogy, curriculum, power, knowledge, stability. You have built a glossary for these terms. To further strengthen your understanding of these issues and terms, you have completed an  a Terms, Expectations, & Questions Sheet (TEQ Sheet) for the readings below:



     • Hugh Culik. "The Evils of the Five-Paragraph Paper."

     • Matthew Malady, "We Are Teaching High School Students to Write Terribly."

                             • notes on Malady's essay

                             • sample TEQ Sheet on Malady's essay

     • Jennifer Gray. "What Do Students Think About the Five-Paragraph Essay?"

     • Shaun Johnson, "Why America's Prep Schools Aren't Following Arne Duncan's Public School Education Reforms."  

     • Jean Anyon, "Social Class and the Hidden Curriculum of Work."  



Reread the Anyon essay (see above link) several times, and revise your TEQ Sheet to make sure that you have understood what she actually said and what you have thought about its strengths and limitations. In a carefully worded essay of at least three pages (750 words), use what Anyon has said to evaluate your previous writing education.

1. Begin your essay with a brief, accurate summary of Anyon’s main ideas.

          a. Your essay might begin with this phrase:  Jean Anyon’s “Social Class and the Hidden Curriculum of Work,” claims that ______.  Accurately summarize her claims, and briefly discuss their strengths, weaknesses, and their relationship to what our other writers say. Note that the introduction might be more than a single paragraph.

          b.You will end the first section with a statement of your own idea about the connection between the kind of writing instruction you’ve received and the social/economic class in which you live.

2. Follow this opening section with a second section that gives evidence (examples) that support your idea.  Be sure that these paragraphs use all four of the paragraph functions discussed in class and presented on this web site. Your job is to describe your previous experience with writing instruction, and to note what is problematic about it.  Again, note that this might be several paragraphs.

3. Create a third section that summarizes and discusses the question in a more general way.  This is your conclusion.  It should both summarize your main ideas and offer an additional "problem" that might be the topic for the next writer who works on this topic.

In order to do this assignment, you will need to complete the two steps below to develop a worthwhile claim. Each is a separate paper in its own right.

•Identifying Gaps in the Map: The Purpose & Problem Statement

After building background knowledge about learning to write, go to the "Purpose and Problem" (P&P)  link on the "Tools" page, and create a P&P Statement about an issue that connects to the background readings.

•Re-Drawing the Map: the Prospectus

At this point, you probably have some clear ideas about what you would like to say about the kind of writing education you've had.   Go to the "Prospectus" link on the Tools page, and create a Prospectus that summarizes the key evidence and ideas of your (unwritten) paper.

          Sample Prospectus: claim-anyon-paper1.pdf



     5 TEQ Sheets

     1 Purpose & Problem Statement

     1 Prospectus

     1 Paper


Other Requirements

    1. The paper must avoid any form of the verb, "to be."  Examples of this verb include "am," "is," "are," "was," "were," "being," "been." This verb creates vague and questionable statements.

    2. The paper may not use second person ("you" or "your"). The terms confuse the reader.

    3. The paper not use "one" as a substitute for second person.

    4. First person ("I") is acceptable only at the sentences that state your own, most important insight, question, hypothesis, or experience.


Subject Line for Submitting Your First Project


                        Example: kelly-project1-8  

                              “kelly” is your last name

                              “project1” is the assignment

                              ”8” is the time the class starts.

   How to Name Your Files:

                         TEQ Sheets:


                                   Example:  kelly-TEQ-Gilliard.docx

                          Purpose and Problem Statement


                                   Example: kelly-PPS1.pages



                                   Example: kelly-Prospectus1.odt