So much of our practice and discussion this semester has revolved around taking notes and the writing that happens when we do that. As students, you’ve filled notebooks with notes, thoughts about reading material, class discussion, object observation, etc.

You’ve noticed, likely, that I, too, have taken notes sometimes during class. These are the kinds of things I’m writing about. First, I’m observing. And I’m actively aware that I’m observing and that language is gathering those observations. Next, because this class values dialogue I’ve been noticing in my notebook whose voices emerge in dialogue. I do realize that some of us are shy and don’t feel comfortable talking in class. This can be especially true when so many students seem to know each other already and seem to feel quite comfortable speaking in class.

I’ve tried orchestrating small groups to help cultivate a measure of comfort for those who prefer not to share their voices with large groups. While ya’ll have been in these groups, engaged in the assigned activities, I’ve been writing what I hear and what I see. For instance, when I invited students to write in response to an image I presented in class the first day, I noticed this in my notebook: “Some students, just a few, look without writing for most of the time allotted. Others write a lot, seemingly, pens moving smoothly, quickly. The room is quiet.Some whispering starts two minutes in. Then I hear two students chatting about grades and expectations. I will bring this to a larger discussion.”

In my notes I also jot down the kinds of things we talked about and did in class: “Fruitful discussions re: meaning. PA read ‘I.Too.’ L. offers a very different reading of the poem. Some talk of FTW. Introduced daily observation exercise. Demonstrated double entry notebook. N. L. W. A. I. A speak in class.”

So that’s the kind of thing I’m writing.

I’m noticing the nature of these notes and the kinds of things I’m thinking about when I write them, but I’ll save that for a future post.
What do you think about my note taking?

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