Posts Tagged ‘rhetorical devices’

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Plug-in Composition Lessons

posted: 5.11.09 by Traci Gardner

Last week on the TechRhet discussion list, Mark Marino shared some cool student widgets that are definitely worth checking out. What are widgets you may well ask. “Widget-Based Education” relies on small plug-ins that communicate nuggets of educational information. Their small size and specific focus make them perfect for fast mini-lessons and they work well to remind students of key ideas or writing practices. To give you an idea what these widgets look like, here’s Marino’s own Topoi widgets, which is part of the Topoi Flakes page.

Students in Marino’s advanced writing course at the University of Southern California created these three widgets, which you can plug-in to your own site to share with your students. To the right of the content you’ll find a panel of buttons that gives you the code to add the tools to Facebook, MySpace, Blogger, and more. If you want to add the widgets to a site that’s not listed, just copy and paste the embed code under the buttons.

Here are the three tools. Each is an alpha version, so remember that students are still tweaking and polishing their work!

  • Writing Process: How to Cure Writer’s Block” suggests 10 different ways that writers can get past blank-screen syndrome. You’ll find links sprinkled through the different sections that will take students to recommended sites, like MindMeister and
  • Rhetorical Devices: Do you Have MagicSpeech?” tests visitor’s knowledge of figurative language and other rhetorical devices. A series of cartoon scenarios demonstrate rhetorical devices in action. Visitors choose one of three options to identify the techniques and get automatic feedback on their performance.
  • Voice: The Wheel of Moody Voices” defines and demonstrates six different moods or modes that writers can adopt as they write. Note that the example sentence for each mood communicates a similar idea, but each in a different way. Suggest students compare the examples to see voice at work.

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Categories: Assignment Idea, Teaching with Technology
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