back to article Tech-savvy UK kids = (over)confident writers

UK children who blog or share their lives on social networking sites are better writers than those who don't. Or at least they think they are. A new study by the National Literacy Trust surveyed 3,001 English and Scottish students ages 9 through 16 and discovered that not only do wee bloggers enjoy writing more than their non- …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
WTF?

Nabokov? Hmm.

"The students' writing experiences included sending text messages (82 per cent), sending AIM or MSN instant messages (73 per cent), and adding comments on social-networking sites (63 per cent) - hardly vehicles for the next Nabokov or Henry James."

It's odd that you'd pick Nabokov as an example; he'd probably have loved instant messaging and commenting. This is after all the author who constructed a large part of a novel (Pale Fire) as supposed marginal notes, and wrote his last novel in tiny pieces on index cards. If you were going to pick an author to write blog-comments-as-literature, Nabokov would be your man.

Be a bit more careful next time you're pulling the names of great authors out of hats. :)

3
2
Stop

Purleeze

Ive sen the stuf dat mi litl grl rites on msn and its just rubbis init??!!!???!!??!!?

5
0

Wow!

"UK children who blog or share their lives on social networking sites are better writers than those who don't."

Stop... Rewind... Reorder and replay

UK children who are better writers blog or share their lives more on social networking sites than those who aren't

Cause? effect? Which is which?

2
0
Troll

Art, innit?

Why is it now that,

Haiku is thought a high art

but text thought so low?

1
0
Silver badge
Troll

Becos...

Wiv haiku u hav

2 think abt wot u rite.

OMG! one one

1
0
Paris Hilton

But what kids meant by "writing" is a bit amorphous.

"and the words of the Prophets are written on the subway walls."

.. Paris, 'cuz she's one of 'em.

~D

1
0
Coat

True... in '79

when Geddy & co released 'Spirit of Radio', but have you seen the 'arty' stuff they put on walls now? Pictures of prophets maybe, very few words where I live.

0
0
Headmaster

<pedant>

Actually, I think that you'll find that's 1964 and simon and Garfunkel

0
0
Happy

I think I'll find...

You're right... Geddy & co nicked it and changed Subway to Studio.... but the picture point still holds true.

0
0
NB
Coat

dear oh dear

*puts on flat cap and driving gloves*

In my day, nigh on twelve years ago, we had written homework assignments every night and were actively writing answers and taking notes in class every day. If this current apathy is the result of New Labours' so called investment then I think we can safely say that that's £30,000,000,000 per annum straight down the pan.

Mine's the one with 'Well Edumacated, innit!' stenciled badly on the back.

0
1
IT Angle

www.findagrave.com?

OMGYG2BK...

0
0
Flame

Not surprising

Any writing is better than no writing at all which in fact is the other alternative.

1
0
Anonymous Coward

Yeah, writing is for smelly girls,

so is reading. Real boys grunt. 'Look Geppetto, no strings.'

0
0

Putting pen to paper scares me.

I pretty much don't do it any more.

0
0
Gold badge

Those hidden stats

"Hidden in the mountains of data in the 52-page report (PDF) are a few discomfiting stats. For example, only 77 per cent of the students wrote notes or answers in class or for homework 'at least once a month'."

You picked up on the homework, but the cited passage actually implies that 23% of students go from one month to the next without writing *in class* either. And there's your red flag. Even the most hardened Daily Mail journo probably wouldn't credit that notion, so in fact this is just another survey where the questions and answers have been twisted in some fashion that we aren't party to.

If the report authors have done this on purpose, it is "damned lies". If they haven't, it is "statistics by the innumerate". Either way, it doesn't deserve our attention.

2
0
FAIL

I think therfore I stink

99% of smart people think that 87% of surveys are only 43% accurate !

What, in the name of pandas, is the point of asking someone if they are a good writer ? not exactly an objective measure of anything but ego. Lets test these budding Hemingways to see how good or bad they really are.

0
0

This post has been deleted by its author

Silver badge
Grenade

Not all homework involes writing.

It's been a couple of decades since I was in school, and even then most of my essay writing was done in class under "controlled conditions." It was solving quadratic equations and trig that took up the hours and hours and hours of fscking homework.

0
0
Boffin

@Not all homework...

Solving quadratics - surely once you've been told the formula they're a piece of piss. Deriving a formula for quadratic equations, calculus & proofs in general, now that's Maths school homework. I hope that some pupils not in the private system still do proper maths sometimes....

(note for US readers - you don't say 'Mathematic' do you? It's because its always plural that 'Maths' is short for 'Mathematics')

0
0
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Still sticks

"minus b plus or minus the square root of b squared minus 4 ac all over 2 a". These things just never leave ya!

Now, try proving the gradient of y=ax^n gives dy/dx=anx^(n-1). Much more satisfying

0
0
Anonymous Coward

Futurama

I dont communicate with people under about 30 years old, do the youves "axe" each other questions yet or is that still some way off.

0
0
Headmaster

1 homework per month?

I used to get it nearly every day, and i only finished school 4 years ago! Unless these kids are in the divvy classes then it makes more sense.

0
0
Anonymous Coward

homework

Seems that my son's history(*) "homework" nowadays often involves no more that a requirement to add at least a couple of comments to a "blog" on the school webserver where they discuss some historical topic.

(*) actually, of course, I don't think its called "history" anymore and is just one component of the amorphous "humanities" subject

0
0

Oh dear Lord

I looked at the subheading and thought "eh?" Then 2 seconds later figured it out. I didn't mean to!

In response to Ken Hagan (23% of students go from one month to the next without writing *in class*...the questions and answers have been twisted) - the lass is a secondary teacher. Believe me when I say that ain't shocking. It's why they struggle at A-Level, and unis end up spending the first month of term teaching freshers how to take notes because very, very few learnt to do it at school.

I'm not saying the report is an example of perfect research, but 1 in 4 kinds not writing in lessons isn't as far out as you'd think unfortunately. As for the other 3 in 4, having seen what they do actually write you'd think most of them shouldn't have bothered themselves...

0
0

Notes/Homework

It's been a few years since I were at school (in that dim and distant past, when university places were only for those who earned them and were therefore fully funded), yet I remember a time with almost no homework and very few written notes.

Why ? The latter because I have a photo-graphic memory (no, really, it annoyed the living shit out of my peers in school) and the former because, well, we just worked harder when in school.

As for the story, when pamphlets like the Twilight saga and Dan Brown are considered literature, then we know just how far we've fallen from an educated populace.

1
0
FAIL

Homework...

By and large, thirty five years ago at my top of the charts now private grammar school, I did very nearly no homework at all and got good enough A levels to get into Imperial College.

Mind you the strategy failed comprehensively there and I got the boot for a lack of course work written up. A school teacher, when he heard about this, commented "yeah, I never did understand how you got away with it here..."

0
0
Headmaster

Some people are never happy

IMHO anything that gets kids reading & writing is a good thing (tm)

Why is it that there is always someone who moans that "It's just not good enough"

When your kids bring home thier finger paintings, you don't berrate them for poor form & composition, no you encourage them; you never know who is going to be the next Banksy or Van Gogh.

*SIGH*

Adults of today, I don't know what the world is coming to

0
0
Stop

OK...

I recall when I was young (all those years ago) when it was nearly only girls who had a 'dear diary'.

You're now telling me that 18% of boys have gone that way? Sheeeezz.....

Seriously, get outside, play some games, have some fun and stop all that emotional exploring and self-reflection - along with the amount of advertising hammered at you nowadays on how worthless you are it's no wonder so many people are on crash diets and antidepressants by the time they're 20.

I know this sounds like a 'boys go ug...girls smell' post, but it isn't intended that way, it's just worthwhile getting outside and to stop giving a cr*p about what the world thinks of you for at least an hour a day!

1
0
Paris Hilton

modern progressive lefties

It started with "non comptetitive sports" and has ended up in wholesale "dumber and dumber".

The good news is that those of us who left school 20 yrs ago have little to fear from our native born competition (ok, all the high educated migrants are going to upsurp them. Still at least someone to pay for public services)

That said, there is something to be said for maintaining the 'oral tradition', eh Paris!!?

0
0

Obvious

"Only 38 per cent of boys enjoy writing, compared with 52 per cent of girls. More boys found writing to be "boring" than girls as well: 57 versus 41 per cent. Boys also thought that writing was more for girls than boys - 60 versus 43 per cent"

Surely those figures all just balance each other out? If more boys find it boring then conversely less boys will find it interesting, and that could also account for the boys who think it's just for girls.

I think I want one of these jobs asking stupid questions to idiots and then just making up the numbers anyway.

0
0
Bronze badge

People vary, a lot.

OK, I've done NaNoWriMo twice, now. Hit the 50,000 word target both times, with time to spare.

Back when I was at school, despite several O-level subjects being based on written essays in the exam, nobody seemed to bother with teaching the basic skills of writing a good enough essay in a half-hour. I still managed to take and pass the English Language exam a half-year early.

I shudder at some of the writing I see published. And I doubt that I write well enough to be regularly published. I am, I admit, somewhat old-fashioned in my style, but I could never hope to emulate that found in the work of Paarfi of Roundwood. I have written in the sonnet form, but I am no Shakespeare. And my limericks are singularly inoffensive to the virginal ear.

Little of this can I credit to the efforts of my teachers. I was reading at an early age, with a voracious enthusiasm. I drank down books with all the enthusiasm of an alcoholic in a distillery. And I even bought my own copy of Fowler: the current edition seems to completely lose the principles which guided his advice.

I mentioned NaNoWriMo. One of the things they do is run a Young Writers' programme.

http://www.nanowrimo.org/eng/ywp

I find it unimaginable that any of my schoolteachers would have even looked at that. And, in this modern tested and regulated world, is there even the time in school to do this?

0
0
This topic is closed for new posts.

Forums