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Journal of Teaching Writing
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
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Forthcoming: JTW’s New Guest-Edited Section on K-12 Classroom Practices "Teacher to Teacher"


JTW intended to launch a new section devoted to K-12 reflections written by and for K-12 teachers in this issue, but feedback from teachers indicates that a summer submission deadline would enable more teachers to submit. Thus, we have extended the deadline until August 1, 2018, and the column will begin in our fall 2018 issue.  This new section will be guest edited by Brandie Bohney, a former Carmel High School teacher (Carmel, IN) who is now completing her Ph.D. at Bowling Green State University (Bowling Green, OH). The theme for the fall 2018 issue is the same as that originally intended for spring: failure in the writing classroom. As writing instructors, we struggle semester after semester to help students understand that first drafts are never final drafts, that it’s okay to take risks in their writing, that expression of meaning is their primary goal, and that expression usually takes several tries. Yet in a time where student success is measured in terms of testing proficiency rather than academic growth, there seems to be little room to allow students to fail or to make them feel safe in doing so.


K-12 teachers are invited to reflect on their own classroom activities, policies, or practices that create space for failure in their writing classrooms.

  • How do you allow students to fail?
  • How do you encourage them to do so?
  • How do you work failure into curricula often centered entirely on success?
  • How do you share your own failures with your students?
  • How do you make failure safe in your classroom and in their writing?
  • How do you encourage students who feel they are failures because of past experiences?
  • How do you balance students’ concerns about failure with the necessity of failure?


Brief submissions (roughly 750-1200 words) that reflect on this theme should be sent as a Word document to jtw@iupui.edu with the subject heading “K-12 Reflection.” The deadline for submissions for our fall 2018 issue is August 1, 2018. All submissions will be reviewed by the Guest Editor in consultation with the JTW Editor. Contributors will be notified of the Editors’ decisions by September 30, 2018.