Thursday, November 25, 2010

LOL: Texting and writing

               Does texting lingo end up in my students work?  All the time!  I have to confess that I find myself using U for You at times, so I can appreciate the difficulty my students have in avoiding texting slang.

                It’s easy to say “no texting slang.”  Easy, easy, easy.   Does that make it disappear?  Nooooo.  But I have my ways.

                When I’m introducing a new online activity, I want my students to focus on learning how to do the activity, so I’m not focusing on mechanics.  Yet.  But the second time we did the vocabulary discussion, I went in and drew a line through every use of texting and every spelling/punctuation/capitalization error – it took me more than two hours.  And then I didn’t give them any credit for entries they made that had any errors in them!  Oh, the screaming and gnashing of teeth.  In the big picture, low grades on one assignment won’t have much impact on their overall grade.  But they hate to see a low grade when they worked hard on something.  And I was mean.  I wouldn’t let them correct their work for a better grade.  I wanted the point to sink in.  And the next time, there were hardly any errors. They got the message.  

Is their work texting-free?  No.  But sometimes getting the conversation going is more important.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! What a tough teacher!
    Good on you, Fran. This seems a very neat strategy to get across the message of appropriateness of vocabulary, spelling, structure, etc for different purposes / genres. Great to hear that your students got the message. I'll bet failing a piece got it home to them better than 100 lectures.