Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Workshop Group Rotations

Earlier, we discussed the role of peer review in helping us improve as writers, and then we used the methods of progressive feedback to give constructive help to our fellow writers.  Today we'll use these techniques as we prepare written feedback for our classmates in different groups.

**Note: Since you'll be responding to feedback and completing revisions, tonight's homework assignment is cancelled.  We'll  wait until next week to transition from Blackboard to Moodle.**

Prepare Your Blog
One of the best aspects of technology is the ease with which we can provide written comments.  Our goal today is that each of you will have a chance to provide in-depth comments on at least two blogs created by other groups in your section.

To do this efficiently, your group will first need to prepare your blog for feedback.  To do this, simply create a new post titled "Please Post General Feedback Here!"  As students from other groups review your blog, they'll post their general comments under this post.

Before beginning workshop, think back to our Rule Four of progressive feedback: the author is part of the workshop process.  Unfortunately, the internet tends to divide us in terms of time and geography - to get around this, each group will post a brief introduction to their blog in this post (and you'll be able to use this in drafting your link exchange write-up for tomorrow.)

In your write up, mention three (or more) aspects of your blog that you feel are most important for a visitor to consider.  Here are possible areas to consider:
  • How your blog tells the story
  • Why you arranged it the way you have
  • Any factors which inspired you while preparing it
  • Your favorite / least favorite part of the project
After the write-up, add two or three questions that you have for your reviewers.  What would you most like to learn from their feedback?

After finishing, make sure this shows up as the top post under your "Home" tab.

Now to the Workshop
Now that your blog is ready, we're going to do a round-robin rotation reviewing blogs.  In your groups, you'll evaluate the blogs prepared by other groups.  To navigate to them, simply visit the Example Blogs tab in the Writing Blog Genre. From the post for each group, you'll find links to the blogs.

In your groups, you'll workshop a blog prepared by another group.  Consider what you know about the blog genre in explaining what you think about each group's blog.  Type in your overall feedback in the comments section of the "Post Feedback Here" post.  If you have feedback about a specific post, you may add it under that post if you prefer.

The Team Workshop Approach
Don't forget that, within your groups, you have a full team of writers.  Feel free to divide up some of the work.  Multiple group members can add comments under the Feedback post (and I prefer it if you do - it's hard for a single person to type a whole group's worth of feedback)

Rotation Schedule
Reviewers --> 1st Blog --> 2nd Blog
Group A   --> Blog B  --> Blog C
Group B   --> Blog C  --> Blog D
Group C   --> Blog D  --> Blog E
Group D   --> Blog E  --> Blog A
Group E   --> Blog A  --> Blog B

The Four Rules of Progressive Feedback
  1. Treat all work as Fiction (unless it's presented as factual)
  2. Start with the Positives
  3. Give Suggestions for Strengthening
  4. Include the Author


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