Exploring new genres can open new doors to the writing process. I have become a better writer and teacher from exposing myself to new ways of understanding genres. Each area of genre brings something unique to writing. I never thought about how the poetry genre relates to all of the other genres, and how some seem so different, yet they are similar. The way the genres were presented also allowed me to experience each genre first hand, and it gave me the opportunity to ask questions if I was confused. Being able to learn a new genre and also apply new understandings to a follow-up activity is extremely beneficial.
Prior to these genre presentations, I was not confident teaching an expert lesson on a particular genre. I can now say that after presenting the poetry genre, I overcame my hesitation to be open-minded to poetry. Not only did researching poetry allow me to broaden my perspective of different forms of writing, but it gave me the confidence to enjoy writing poems and gave me the opportunity to see some other powerful poetry pieces. Jack Perlutsky is such a great poet because he relates to children, and writes in wacky, fun ways. He really captured my attention, and made me think about how poetry doesn't always have to be boring or hard to comprehend. If we make poetry and other genres enjoyable for children to learn, they will be engaged.
Before learning more throughout the expert genre presentations, I thought I had a pretty good understanding of what the narrative genre was; however I learned so many new aspects of teaching this genre after it was presented. I learned that we should write for a purpose, and make sure we include the 5 elements of the genre. Tompkins discusses that these 5 elements are key to narrative writing. I never broke down each element, but after learning more about them, I can start to think in ways which I can provide guided instruction, throughout the reading and writing process. I have also developed a new understanding to relating genres with one another. Jame, Esther, and Jennie did an amazing job intertwining the narrative genre with the biography genre. They focused on a theme which was relevant and apparent throughout their lesson. I understood that theme is the underlying message that the author is trying to convey. Before deconstructing this genre, I never focused on theme as a crucial component to the narrative genre. I didn't even really know much about the genre as a whole. I think through hands-on explicit learning, students can have a valuable experience with genres, and begin to learn new ways of reading and writing. I am now confident to further my understanding of each genre, and allow myself to become comfortable with teaching them.