Thursday, February 4, 2010

Comma Splice Wednesday

Nothing too interesting to report from Wedneday's class. Since their diagnostic essays showed some problems with the typical FYC suspects -- comma splices, run-ons, and fragments, I made a quirky little Powerpoint and then had the students do an exercise. BUT -- somewhere in the craziness of the morning, I forgot the exercise I prepared so I winged it instead ... And I think it worked better! I had the students open up a new Word document on their computers (we meet in a lab) and write a short paragraph on their weekend plans in which they had to intentionally make as many mistakes as they could in relation to these three common error patterns. What fun! They loved "writing badly" -- afterwards, I had them do a shuffle "dance" where they switched seats and got to fix each others' problems. I think fun was had by all. Before they left class, I had the students print off their resulting paragraphs and I think I am going to get them to play with them once more at the beginning of tomorrow's class.


  1. What a fun, interactive activity. I may have to try something like that one day. I have had students do activities where they start writing, then stop, play musical chairs, and they must continue another person's writing, trying to keep tone and style consistent. It would be helpful, I think, if students kept the original "bad" prose to see how much better (we hope) the revision sounds and if the editor/rewriter kept original meaning.

  2. Wow! What a cool idea, Denise! I will have to try that when we talk about tone/ diction! Thanks for the idea! :D