Sharing Our Writing with Students: Examining Tensions and Questioning Our Motives

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Conference Proceeding

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As two literacy teacher educators, we strive to model practices for teachers and teacher candidates. We have no hesitation in modeling instructional practices across various courses, yet we struggle in our writing methods courses when modeling focuses on processes of writing, rather than those of instruction. Despite evidence supporting the value of teachers' modeling specific to writing (Graves, 1983; Kaufman, 2009), we found ourselves shying away from sharing our own writing as a means for modeling. Although we literally implore our teachers and teacher candidates to write with their students, we did not "walk our talk" (Hamilton & Pinnegar, 2000). Recognizing contradiction between beliefs and practices, we challenged ourselves to do more sharing of our writing. The discomfort and vulnerability we felt as we did so ultimately forced us to move beyond reflection and casual conversation. In this paper, we share what we have learned from systematic scrutiny of our reactions, motives for sharing, and assumptions about its impact upon our students.

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