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Paul and Kate Farmer Writing Award Recipients

The Paul and Kate Farmer English Journal Writing Award is given to authors of the best articles published in English Journal during the previous volume year. Eligible entrants must be high school teachers and may include those on leave or not currently teaching.

2015 Award Commiteee

Chair: Caitlin Murphy

Committee: Katie Greene, Kaitlen Grigsby, Adam Hicks, Courtney Morgan, and Janis Mottern-High

2015 Winners


Cover Art for English Journal, Vol. 104, No. 2, November 2014Chris Gilbert
(Buncombe County Early College, Asheville, North Carolina) for “A Call for Subterfuge: Shielding the ELA Classroom from the Restrictive Sway of the Common Core” (Vol. 104, No. 2, November 2014)

Abstract: This author discusses how ELA instructors must practice subterfuge and resist standardization by using Personal Standards.

Committee Statement: In this timely article Gilbert clearly articulates the importance of prioritizing both teacher and student values with regards to selecting of texts and approaching the Common Core. Grounded in “sound research and theory,” Gilbert creates personal standards and manages to connect with and challenge his students in an authentic, real-world way.

This is Chris Gilbert's second Farmer Award. He won the award in 2013 for “Changing the Lens: The Necessity of Visual Literacy in the ELA Classroom” (Vol. 102, No. 4, March 2013).

Cover Art for English Journal, Vol. 104, No. 1, September 2014Jennifer Rossuck (Upper School English Department, Randolph School, Huntsville, Alabama) for “My Year of Sports” (Vol. 104, No. 1, September 2014)

Abstract: This piece looks at how banned books can offer an illuminating glimpse into social constructions of “healthy” and “normal” adolescent development. Unease with certain materials and topics in the secondary classroom can offer productive points of inquiry for both teachers and students.

Committee Statement: In this article, Rossuck offers a plethora of ideas for adaptable, interdisciplinary projects for the ELA classroom. She allows sports to be the unifying idea and thread connecting a wide range of rigorous sports literature with the classics. Texts included a focus on privilege and sports in The Great Gatsby and the bridge that basketball provides for the protagonist in The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. Rossuck also makes room for meaningful, creative writing tasks and service learning projects.

2015 Honorable Mentions


Cover Art for English Journal, Vol. 104, No. 4, March 2015Michael Hoffman
(Washtenaw International High School, Ypsilanti, Michigan) for “Peer Response, Remixed: Authentic Peer Response through Audio Technology” (Vol. 104, No. 4, March 2015)

Abstract: Students are encouraged to generate interpretations of peer work using digital audio technology to record and then reconfigure that work.

Committee Statement: In this article Hoffman acknowledges the common struggles teachers of writing face when having students complete peer reviews. Hoffman offers a way for peers to become “interpreters not responders” by “remixing” or using technology to interpret peers’ writing in a new way. Students take another’s writing and refashion it as he/she understands it through music or video, thus enhancing learning and conferring.

Cover Art for English Journal, Vol. 104, No. 3, January 2015Alyssa Niccolini (Frederick Douglass Academy VII High School, Brooklyn, NY) Precocious Knowledge: Using Banned Books to Engage in a Youth Lens” (Vol. 104, No. 3, January 2015)

Abstract: This piece looks at how banned books can offer an illuminating glimpse into social constructions of “healthy” and “normal” adolescent development. Unease with certain materials and topics in the secondary classroom can offer productive points of inquiry for both teachers and students.

Committee Statement: In this article, Niccolini uses literature to promote conversation and thought. The article is a blend of practical, theoretical, and personal rationales behind using banned books in our classroom. Niccolini challenges the way society has constructed our understanding of adolescent development, particularly what we call “healthy” and “normal,” in an attempt to explore how students can connect with and think critically about challenging issues through banned texts.

The awards presentation will be held at the Secondary Section Luncheon on Saturday, November 21 during the NCTE Annual Convention in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

 

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