What is a recursive process of writing? And what is the best way to teach it in a elem/ middle school.

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This is a great question.  I think that the challenging element here is to be able teach students that writing is not something that is solely driven by product.  In an age of standard based educational reform and high stakes testing, this is a challenge.  Writing has become a part of this process in that students see writing as something that is "to get done."  While product is a part of writing, teaching recursive writing is something that is diverse and divergent. Recursive writing involves teaching students that all writing is a draft.  Even final drafts that are submitted can be modified or changed after the fact.  We have deadlines and must adhere to them, but the process of writing is ongoing and not arbitrarily defined by the final draft from an external source.  I think that this involves teaching students that multiple drafts and multiple moments of reflection are parts of the writing process.  At the same time, it might also involve grading writing on a more narrative basis and not something that is entirely based on a letter grade or final product.  Perhaps, the grade is based off of a student's reflection and identification of goals in future writing.  I think that Nancie Atwell's works on teaching Reading and Writing would be a part of this process, especially with the idea of writing workshops and conferences as integral.

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