Sunday, December 15, 2013

Why Creative Writing is Every Bit as Important as the Research or Argument Paper!

This quite recent creation...still a work in progress actually, is based on the types of very serious, very rigorous, and yes, very FUN and intriguing writing activities I did in my semester long creative writing classes for Juniors and Seniors, which in turn was based on many classes I took with professors while I was a student myself.

Is it true that teachers are struggling, this year more than most with the new standards? Is it correct to say the arts are a wee bit "less essential"?

I have always found that poetry and fiction writing can harness critical thinking, the routine of word economy and proper word choice, the ability to pattern, pace, strategize, and more. Additionally, Students have told me, over, and over, and OVER again how the rigors of creative writing had somehow teased their brains into writing better (my words I suppose, not theirs) and gave them transferable skills. I think the passion and enthusiasm I feel, and that students can have for creative writing is so powerful, that the course and its USEFULNESS needs to be addressed.

If there is anyone who would like to discuss, agree, or even raise a question or disagree, I welcome it. I do feel that translatable skills abound in the writing room, as they ALSO do in the music or art room. Students are required for example in a writing class to perform rewrites and drafts, be a part of a community of writers, and make numerous decisions. Writing a full length story is on many levels MORE complicated than constructing in a comparison or argument essay. The reason for this is simple. A story is an organic form, or, a highly complex form purposely organized to appear as if it was effortless. While the goal of an essay is to be clear and accomplish something, a story must do a multitude of things and do it all quite well. Finally, a short story can be lucid, exceptionally well written, exciting and moving, and yet may additionally have a character persuade or argue, implying that the author behind the story must have these abilities. The argument essay itself may only boast at its best that it is very good in its form as an argument essay.

While the comparison or argument essay is an essential essay that must be tackled in school for a Core Standard, one must realize that in writing a story, one can also apply Core Standards to story writing. In the end, students must be given free reign to create, but in the end, the MORE students write, the more VARIED the writing, the more transferrable all of their skills will be and the better they will be as writers. In the end, creative writing is an essential part of a healthy and well-rounded writing diet.

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