You are here

Using Journals With Reluctant Writers

Using Journals With Reluctant Writers
Building Portfolios for Middle and High School Students

June 2000 | 160 pages | Corwin
`This is one of the best books I have seen on topics for writing. All students could benefit from this - not just the reluctant writer' - Carol Miller, Intervention Specialist, Mineral Ridge High School, Mineral Ridge, Ohio

Primarily intended for at-risk and/or special education students, this proposed workbook provides journal topics designed to inspire even the most reluctant writers. The topics begin with general non-revealing, non-threatening ideas. These topics will help to introduce writing as a means of expression and allow the student to test the teacher's reactions before encountering material that requires more personal responses. The topics have multiple questions, because many students (especially reluctant writers) will answer any question with as few words or as simple a sentence as possible.

Using journals as daily practice and requiring weekly formal essays can provide students with the tools they need to become proficient writers. Each journal topic is followed by a video, and half have related readings that can be used for a more comprehensive English course. All of the ideas in this book are simply starting points for teachers to develop and use in the manner that best fits their students and classroom environment.

Suggested Video: Dead Poet's Society

Trading Places
Suggested Video: LadyHawke

Life Summary
Suggested Video: Forrest Gump / Suggested Reading: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Suggested Video: Breaking Away / Suggested Reading: Walk Two Moons

Suggested Video: Parenthood

Suggested Video: What's Eating Gilbert Grape?

Suggested Video: Mr Holland's Opus

Suggested Video: The River Wild / Suggested Reading: Touching the Void

Suggested Video: Rudy

Suggested Video: Stand and Deliver

Autumn Holidays
Suggested Video: The War / Suggested Reading: Born on the 4th of July

Being Alone
Suggested Video: Iron Will / Suggested Reading: Hatchet

Suggested Video: Renaissance Man / Suggested Reading: Romeo and Juliet

Suggested Video: Star Trek IV

Suggested Video: It's a Wonderful Life / Suggested Reading: The Gift of the Magi

The Future
Suggested Video: Multiplicity / Suggested Reading: The Giver

Coming of Age
Suggested Video: Dirty Dancing / Suggested Reading: The Car

Suggested Video: Roxanne

Suggested Video: My Girl

Old Age
Suggested Video: Cocoon

What Dreams May Come
Suggested Video: What Dreams May Come / Suggested Reading: Tuck Everlasting

Suggested Video: Greedy

Suggested Video: My Bodyguard / Suggested Reading: The Midwife's Apprentice

Suggested Video: The Color Purple / Suggested Reading: The Color Purple

Suggested Video: Cool Hand Luke / Suggested Reading: Holes

Suggested Video: Philadelphia

Cliques and Gangs
Suggested Video: The Outsiders / Suggested Reading: The Outsiders

Suggested Video: School Ties / Suggested Reading: Night

Suggested Video: A League of Their Own / Suggested Readings: Sounder; Black Like Me

Suggested Video: Malcolm X / Suggested Reading: The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Suggested Video: Benny and Joon

Suggested Video: Field of Dreams

Television and Movies
Suggested Video: The Truman Show

Suggested Video: White Fang / Suggested Reading: To Build a Fire

Famous Dates
Suggested Video: Groundhog Day

Suggested Video: War of the Buttons / Suggested Reading: Lord of the Flies

Suggested Video: Liar, Liar / Suggested Reading: Lies

Suggested Video: Contact

Suggested Video: The Cure

Suggested Video: Running Brave

Suggested Video: Young Einstein / Suggested Reading: Searching for Bobby Fisher

Suggested Video: The Fugitive / Suggested Reading: Hound of the Baskervilles

What If...
Suggested Video: Deep Impact

Suggested Video: Desert Bloom

Suggested Video: With Honors


"I loved the book and the soulful responses it generated from my reluctant writers." 

Dee Conklin, Ph.D.
Teacher, Reno Sparks Indian Colony

 "This journal program is authentic and gets students to write! Because the journal topics reflect current issues, my students respond positively. And, I get great insight into their lives."

Carol Popowich
Resource Teacher, Marshall Alternative High School

"This is a book that is sorely needed! I’m impressed with the mature way the topics are presented to the students." 

Rob Owens
Teacher, Washburn Rural High School

"This is one of the best books I have seen on topics for writing. All students could benefit from this – not just the reluctant writer." 

Carol Miller, Intervention Specialist
Mineral Ridge High School, Mineral Ridge, OH

"The topics and assignments are intended to develop students’ critical thinking skills, encourage self-discovery, and ultimately result in more relevant and proficient writing." 

Exceptional Child Education Resources
Summer 2001, Volume 33(2)

For instructors

Please contact your Academic Consultant to check inspection copy availability for your course.

Select a Purchasing Option

ISBN: 9780761976127