Dear Mr. Stine,
I was wondering if you'd be willing to move the science test back another week? I have been studying on my own, but the study guide you provided is not very helpful, and I don't feel like we've covered the information well enough in class. Some of my friends have also expressed similar concerns, and we all think an extension of the test date is in order.
While Jacky's email might follow a lot of the obvious, more minor guidelines for email etiquette, I would conference with her about how she could word her concerns in a tone that would win the audience over to her side rather than alienating the instructor by putting him on the defensive.
The number one comment I find myself repeating to students as I conference is this: Would you say this to their face? No? Then we need to word it differently in writing. Like text messaging or commenting on social media, it's easy to make hurtful and even mean remarks when you're separated from the audience by a digital wall.
Year after year, parents report to me that immediate feedback through conferencing is the number one factor in helping their children grow as writers. It's in this safe place that we can be honest, we can provide real-time feedback, and students can make improvements to their writing.
USING EMAIL WRITING AS A PRE-TEST
No one wants to start the year with a stack of papers to grade. Actually, people generally don't like stacks of paper at any time of the year. Yet, in order for students to really understand email etiquette, they need practice and repetition. So. How do we grade it without overwhelming ourselves?
We can start by asking a simple question: What's the purpose of this unit? In short, the goal is to help students communicate more politely in writing. What's the best way to teach them? In class - through practice and conferencing. Therefore, most of the "grading" takes place through discussion.
Teaching students about email etiquette doesn't have to add to equate to a mountain's worth of grading. Plus, by allowing students a free space to experiment, be vulnerable, and receive feedback that doesn't hurt their grade, an invaluable risk-taking platform develops; consequently, it creates a writing culture in which students feel confident and free to toy with their skills.
Many teachers begin the year with pre-tests, and I have as well. Formal writing pre-tests have value, but I find them more appropriate in small-group settings, for intervention, or with tutoring. Besides, trying to grade a stack of essays (even in the form of emails) at the beginning of the year is overwhelming. It's not fun to start the year feeling behind.
Since the goal of pre-tests is to help teachers gear their writing instruction, teachers can use email etiquette lessons to inform their future writing instruction. As you read students' email drafts and conference with them, you can keep a list of common errors you notice and use this information, which is gained in an authentic way, to decide where you want to begin your formal writing lessons.
Remember poor late-work Pete? What if his email had sounded like this?
Dear Mrs. Kinsley,
I am so sorry for not turning in my "Interlopers" reading guide on time. It's my responsibility. I submitted it at the end of the day today, but I didn't see you in your classroom. I just want to make sure you received it. Can you verify? Thanks so much in advance for your time in responding, and I apologize for the inconvenience.
Do your students have any experience with writing formal emails to teachers, bosses, or other superiors? Do you receive emails from students which could be more professional? Will your students be applying for a job one day? Students of all subject areas and grade levels can benefit from some engaging #EmailFail and Email Etiquette 101 lessons. Let's help ourselves by helping our students hone real-world writing skills that will give them a competitive edge. You might be surprised how many of your students will thank you in return.
Кто-то постучал в дверь. - Войдите, - буркнул Нуматака. Массажистка быстро убрала руки из-под полотенца. В дверях появилась телефонистка и поклонилась: - Почтенный господин. - Слушаю.