National Writing Project

Merced Writing Project Prepares Students to Think Beyond "Yes" or "No" Answers

Publication: The Sacramento Bee
Date: September 23, 2011

Summary: The UC Merced Writing Project seeks to take student writing to a whole new level by helping teachers master advanced techniques to get students thinking more analytically about the subjects they are studying.


Excerpt from Article

Pauline Sahakian, director of the UC Merced Writing Project, explains it this way:

"Our goal is to prepare high school students for the rigor of college and career work by helping teachers develop effective reading and writing teaching strategies. We want to challenge students to read more complex texts and to write thoughtfully and analytically. This grant allows us to expand our cadre of teachers who are best prepared to accomplish this task."

Cindy Heaton, director of district and school services for the Merced County Office of Education, said today's students should be able to go beyond just giving pat answers to questions.

"Kids today are needing something more than just answer questions with a 'yes' or 'no,' " Heaton said. "Rather than just regurgitate what the textbook says, they should be asking probing questions about what they are writing about, learn how to analyze and look deeper in what they are addressing."

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Read Project prepares students to think beyond 'yes' or 'no' answers in the Sacramento Bee.

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