Catherine and Katharine

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Catherine: Katharine Beals and I have a new project coming out this month: a linguistically-based, do-it-yourself writing curriculum embedded in Ed Berenson’s textbook for Oxford, Europe in the Modern World: A New Narrative History since 1500.

It’s one of a kind: all of the exercises use sentences from the text, so students learn how to write about history using the history they’re actually learning.

Writing should be taught inside the disciplines, not outside, but for many history professors that’s really not feasible. Today’s students enter college needing help with sentence structure, paragraphing, cohesion — they need extensive work on the fundamentals. It’s too much to manage inside one course.

That’s the problem. Only a handful of colleges and universities offer discipline-specific writing classes situated inside departments; most rely on stand-alone composition classes and writing centers.

Our solution: a sequence of step-by-step, do-it-yourself exercises that begin with the sentence and end with the history paper. Professors can spend as much or as little time overseeing the exercises as they wish.

We’re excited.

I’ve been blogging at Kitchen Table Math since 2005, mostly about math education, but more recently, after becoming an instructor of freshman English, about grammar and composition.

I’ll pick that story up later on. Here’s Katharine —–

Katharine, here: I’ve been blogging at Out in Left Field since 2008, and posted my final pieces this past week–including a couple on penmanship and one on my autistic son J. I’m excited to join Catherine here at catherineandkatharine.wordpress.com.

You can read more about each of us here.