You are on page 1of 7

APR 2016

Madison Bertenshaw

A. 2016 Accomplishments Narrative: 1-2 paragraphs reflecting on the 2016 academic year
and assessing the success of your course.

I have been successfully working as a lecturer teaching 101A at the UA since Fall 2016. During
this semester, I successfully taught two sections of the course and developed assignments,
activities and lesson plans that encourage student writers to focus on issues of craft, as well as
critical thinking, analysis, and rhetorical awareness. For example, I have students write a literacy
narrative for Unit 1 and additionally require them to create a Statement of Goals and Choices.
This 1.5-2 page document requires students to explain why they chose particular strategies for
their given genre, and the effect of these strategies for a particular audience in a particular
context. This effective reflection activity allows students the space to explore their purpose for
writing and developing insights about their literacies (broadly defined as the ability to extract
meaning from complex systems that arent intuitively understood).
I have effectively utilized studio time for discussing issues of craft, specifically designing my
lesson plans around workshops where students could focus on sentence-level issues (e.g. active
verbs, first-person perspective, description, conventions) and global level concerns (e.g.
structure, organization, voice, and register). In the second unit, Contextual Visual Analysis,
students work through an analyzing advertisements handout in order to arrive at a specific claim
about a visual text. The activity asks students to think critically about how their context(s), which
they examined in the Unit 1 narrative, shape the way they view and interpret the text. This leads
to unit three, ideological film analysis, where students work backwards to uncover how their
ideologies are shaped by contexts and shared in texts we create and assess. As these examples
illustrate, the design of our course successfully focuses on identity, context and different
narrative modes.
B. 2016 Improvements Narrative: 2-4 paragraphs discussing advancements and/or changes.
Please include any new ideas or materials you have introduced this year, as well as any
improvements you have made to an existing lesson plan; you may want to discuss the reasons
behind the changes, and identify future plans for the new academic year.

In the past semester, I have improved my Unit 2 Contextual Visual Analysis by having students
work through a Selfie Activity using VoiceThread, a collaborative learning space available
through d2l. Early in this unit we examine photography, theories of looking (the Student Guide),
and selfies as a potential text that allows us to make meaning (we read Jerry Saltzs article Art at
Arms Length: A History of the Selfie). In class we discuss the shift in art from public to
private and examine the ways that everyone is a photographer courtesy of camera phones and
social networking. In class I have students work in groups to analyze sample selfies found
online. Students analyze the images in order to unpack the different rhetorical decisions made by
the photographer. I have had lively debates with students as they reason whether a selfie serves a
greater purpose or makes some meaning (i.e. is it a selfie plus) about our contemporary
This semester I created a follow-up activity that asked students to create a selfie plus or selfie-
short story on the UA campus. My requirements for the task were: 1) the image must create a
third meaning or tell your audience something they dont already know about the way you (the
photographer) see, interpret or question spaces, places or events on the UA campus and 2) make
intentional decisions about staging visual rhetoric (e.g. framing, color/contrast, focus,
background, character expression, gesture, props) and the photographers gaze.
I have students upload their photos as a slide to the d2l VoiceThread page (by this point in the
semester, I have had students practice uploading media and commenting on one anothers slides
in a number of modes). For homework I ask students to narrate a story for a peers selfie and
record/post their comment. The next day we do a reflection and revision activity and students
post a comment that a) addresses the accuracy of their peers interpretation of their story and b)
how they might revise their selfie to do more analytical work (see attached grid: What Analytical
Work Can Your Selfie Do?).
I find VoiceThread to be a more engaging way for students to share their work and respond
(using written comments, audio recording, phone-in message or even video). In the past, I have
done similar activities in my 101 class where I ask students to share materials in the d2l
discussion board. They often ignore the comments, skim through the blocks of written text, or
fail to download attachments. In VoiceThread, students work through a series of slides that are
more interactive and encourage a conversation-like dialogue. This medium provides a space for
students to share their ideas out loud. Students can download the application on their phone
and listen/record with their earbuds in-class. In the future I hope to incorporate VoiceThread into
the final unit which asks students to prepare a group presentation on film and ideology.
VoiceThread could be utilized in a number of ways to not only improve communication, but also
hold students responsible for their contributions. I can imagine the tool helping students track
contributions as comments/media uploads during in and out of class work times (emphasizing
process over product), as well as creating a more interactive presentation that can be unpacked
and commented on by peers in the class.

Lesson Plan: Tuesday 1/24/17

Outcomes: Students will be able to define literacy. Students will be able to define code
switching. Students will leave w/ a fully fleshed out paragraph regarding one literacy experience.

1. Refresh: Pair/Share three questions

a. Powerpoint slide (screenshot below)
b. Converse about multiple literacies, how we can define the genre of the literacy narrative
based on the conventions
c. Think rhetorically. What is the purpose of these texts? For what audience? What kinds of
contexts are they exploring?
2. Gloria Anzalduas How to Tame a Wild Tongue
a. Guiding questions
b. List out the literacies and contexts she is exploring in the text on the board.
c. Ask: How is she exploring these literacies/what strategies? To what effect? What is her
purpose in writing?
3. Code Switching: Excerpts from Gabrielle Bellots Who Gets to Decide What
Counts as English? (screenshot below)
a. Practice of alternating between 2 or more languages
b. What are the benefits to this ability? Resistance, legitimize a way of seeing the world that
is marginalized or trying to be eradicated.
c. Do you think code switching is viewed as a type of literacy? A positive thing? Or
something else in American culture?
d. Analyze excerpt from Bellot -- what rhetorical strategies employed? What stylistic
decisions has the writer made?
4. Concept Mapping: Literacy and Mapping LIteracy Experiences
a. Model (screenshot below)
b. Map in groups and share
5. Reflection: Discuss
a. How does language make identity?
b. Return to strategies that we use as writers to make this evident.
Lesson Plan: Thursday 1/26/17

Outcomes: Students will understand the Unit 1 Writing Assignment. Students will list strategies
utilized by the author of Ms Conceptions (SG) and understand how they can use these
strategies rhetorically in their own writing.

1. Announcements (5)
a. Course policies are available on d2l/handout. You are responsible for understanding and
knowing them from this point onward.

2. Discuss the Assignment Sheet/Rubric (10-15)

a. Have students break into groups and summarize/synthesize the different parts in their
own words
b. Any questions or concerns?

3. Continue free-write: power point slides (35-40)

a. Writers tool box in google doc: What patterns of language or strategies des County use
in her narrative to create a scene? (screenshot below)
i. What tools do we have in our toolbox to create a
scene? Students will type into google doc and contribute in groups (e.g. establish context,
characters, dialogue, reflection/thoughts, feelings, point of view/perspective, tone, sensory
description, setting)
ii. Return and revise this living document.
b. Reflect on scene work (Journal #2): what strategies you utilized? reflection /revision.
c. Literacy Narratives as Genre handout ( below)
i. Goal: consider what options are available to you in
this genre.
ii. Have Ms. Conceptions as well as your assignment
sheet available to answer the question how in column three. Youll want to keep in mind your
purpose for writing the literacy narrative. Do an example together.

4. Revise: Journal #2 (15) (below)

a. Two slides.

5. Homework
a. Read: SG Student Essay Cancer for Dummies (SG 269-272)
b. Write: Draft one full scene from your narrative (approximately two to three paragraphs)
utilizing patterns/strategies discussed in class.
2. Professional Development/Service Materials

1. Attended a WriPaca Meeting

In this open meeting on January 17th, 2017, the committee discussed the WP Access to
Classes policy for research opportunities, as well as the 109H book policy parameters.
This meeting helped me consider how I utilize texts in my 101A, 101, and 102 courses
and how readings support critical thinking and their roles as writers.

2. Brown Bag: Creating Effective Assignment Sheets: Instructor and Student Perspectives
After attending this Brown Bag, I had new ideas about how to design assignment sheets
to articulate not only my goals as an instructor for the class, but also for student
accessibility and learning. It's a balance of too little or too much information that became
obvious during the visits from undergraduate honors students from past 109H sections. I
left the session with specific strategies for creating and revising assignment sheets.

3. Advising and mentoring activities, writing letter of recommendation

I wrote a letter of recommendation for a student from my fall 2016 101A course.

4. National Day on Writing Volunteer

I volunteered to help the Writing Program for the National Day on Writing. I handed out
and collected papers, and also assisted students at different contest stations for the day.

5. GED Tutoring at Literacy Connects Non-Profit

I trained with Literacy Connects, a local Tucson non-profit, to tutor to develop literacy
skills for adults and nontraditional learners to prepare to take their GED exams. I trained
over 12 hours in fall 2016 and worked four hours a week on reading and writing skills.

6. Conference Presentation
I helped prepare a presentation for the summer 2016 Council of Writing program
Administrators (CWPA) entitled "Making Mentorship Meaningful: Graduate WPAs and
Professional Development." I prepared the presentation with my fellow Transfer and
Placement Office members.