#mnli13 Day Four Reflection: Prewriting for Digital Publishing

Day Four. Its make or break. A day for workhorses. We build in two design studios for participants to create their learning activities. The goal is to choose a pedagogical goal and enhance that goal with digital texts and tools.

This year we tried something different. We created a paper based “road map” and had participants brainstorm there before moving to a google doc.

We ended up calling the paper version a “sloppy copy.” We fell on our old teacher talk of rough drafts. Yet the Google Doc is an “always draft.” Continuously unfolding and changing as they revise their thinking.

This made me think about pre-writing in general when we are talking about interactive digital writing. Ian is an advocate that you plan on paper before you can turn to a screen. It is a method to ensure students learn the hardest lesson of design: economy of choice.

I do not take it that far but I have to pre-write on paper before I turn to pixels. I did so for my keynote before I spoke on Tuesday. I even created two drafts of my outline:

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You can see that while I plan on paper computer based design influenced my thinking. I am dividing my thinking into a topic “Education There isn’t an App for That” and then two keypoints “text based analysis” and “text based discussion.” I then drove my talk to different apps that can serve teachers in enhancing their pedagogical goals.

I went around saw many teachers were pre-planning on paper too.

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So this got me thinking. I am not one to limit student choice, but this got me thinking should I encourage students to prewrite offscreen? Is it generational? Could they use mind mapping software? Is that a waste of isntructional time? How do you prewrite?

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