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Blog

Stay informed of the latest company news, product releases, and musings on education policy and technology by subscribing to the MyloWrites blog.

 

LIVE NOW: MyloWrites Podcasts

Mya Dunlop

“Differentiation, either slowing down or speeding up gives the rest of the class this different perspective. It teaches empathy in a way that no other lesson really can.”

Our inaugural podcast is now available for Apple and Android devices!

MyloWrites_Podcasts

In this episode, Sari Biddelman, Learning Specialist at an independent school in NYC, discusses her personal journey with learning differences, her supporting role in the classroom and her approach to teaching students at their own pace.

Visit our podcast page to listen, download and even sign up to be apart of our show.

Be sure to comment and subscribe for new episodes. Visit all our podcasts at Mylowrites.com/podcasts

Why We Need a 21st Century Approach to Writing Instruction

Mylo Dunlop

Academic Excellence.

That phrase encapsulates the independent school movement, represented in the successful enrollment of thousands of their graduates in the top universities of the world.  

Central to that achievement is developing students with a superior ability to write often, ethically and thoughtfully.

Unfortunately a study by the The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) found that most students are not achieving excellence in writing. Here’s their data on eighth-graders for example:

While attending an independent school offers a clear advantage, even at independent schools 60% of students fail to achieve more than a basic writing ability.


...at independent schools 60% of students fail to achieve
more than a basic writing ability.


Every assessment framework has to be evaluated critically. Writing does not lend itself to cookie cutter measurement.

Yet our discussions with the specialists, teachers, and leaders at the top independent schools in the US have reflected this challenge: many students struggle with writing, few regularly achieve excellence.

At MyloWrites, we are intimately familiar with that struggle. Our son Mylo created the first version of the app to help him overcome it, with a dream to helping kids who struggled like him.

What our journey has taught us it that schools often focus on the quality of the output of their students’ writing, but students are too frequently exhausted by the process.

MyloWrites is designed to walk students through their writing assignments so they can master the writing process and internalize it.

This means fewer delays in the classroom and more time working with teachers to improve their ability to express their ideas - the key to achieving writing excellence.

We’re looking for schools who are leading the pursuit of excellence in 21st century education. If this sounds like a goal your school is ready to focus on, we’d love to learn more about what you are doing and collaborate on bringing writing excellence to every student!

This Month’s Must Read: Is It Time To Go Back To Basics With Writing Instruction?

Nicole Abesamis

We wanted to share with you this eye-opening article on how returning back to the basics of writing a simple sentence turned around high schoolers from struggling to successful writers and higher overall test scoring students.

Exposing the tough reality students of NYC public high school students face today, Katrina Schwartz for the insightful MindShift blog reports in depth with Nell Scharff Panero, director of the Center for Educational Leadership at Baruch College.

This article sheds light on the challenges students are facing with writing, discovering that their challenges stemmed from their lack of understanding of how to build and write a basic sentence.

Read on here to learn more about this writing revolution.


Quotes that stood out to us:

When teachers try taking instruction back to basics using what she calls ‘progressive mastery,’ they see big improvements in the quality of both thinking and writing, and that students can meet high school expectations when teachers slow down to show them how to write well.”

“Scanlon said it was difficult for his staff to acknowledge that pointing fingers at students wasn’t going to improve performance. Instead, the staff had to accept the reality of where their students were at and try something new and different for most high school teachers.”

“School administrators chose to implement writing across the curriculum because they began to see that many of the gaps in writing knowledge also pointed to fundamental abilities to express relationships. Using “so” correctly in a sentence, for example, indicates causality, an idea that’s just as important in math and science as it is in more writing-intensive disciplines like social studies and English.”

“Asking students to read longer and more challenging texts, and to write longer essays without first showing them in concrete ways how to build up to that level, defeats the purpose in her mind.”

“Ideally they should have learned this in elementary and junior high school,” said Lauren Salamone, who teaches sophomores Global History. “That’s your automatic reaction, but it’s not the reality.