Plugs, Play, Pedagogy

Plugs, Play, Pedagogy

Teaching writing and rhetoric in the 21st century

Episode 12: Video Didn't Kill the Composition Student

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Composition classes are getting increasingly multimodal. You can't avoid it--and why would you want to? Visuals, sounds, videos--all are modes of composing that match up with the rhetorical principles we use when teaching alphabetic writing.

In this episode, co-edited with John Silvestro of Miami University, we focus on the practicalities of assigning video projects to your students. First, John interviews Jason Palmeri, director of First-Year Composition at Miami University and author of _Remixing Composition_. Then, John and Kyle chat about an all-text kind of video assignment (??!!). Finally, we'll hear from Crystal VanKooten of Oakland University for an overview of scholarship on video in the composition classroom.

Episode 11: Composing Creatively

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Many of us have feet in both the rhetoric/composition community and the creative writing community. To figure out why that is and what we can do about it, I focused this episode around the new book Creative Composition: Inspiration and Techniques for Writing Instruction.

First you'll hear an interview I conducted with one of the book's co-editors, Danita Berg. Then you'll hear 3 short pieces from contributors to the volume: Denise Landrum-Geyer, Anna Leahy, and Shawn Kerivan, all touching on different aspects of the overlap.

Episode 10: Exploring the Past

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So I made a thing. An audio thing. An audio thing that I wanted to make and loved making, all about history and spaces and the line between being creepy or not creepy--but I was worried that it didn't have much to do with pedagogy. And this is a show about pedagogy.

So I did what any sensible person would do: I emailed my audio thing to scholars Jody Shipka and Jen Michaels and asked them to record responses--particularly responses that suggested ways to connect my piece to the classroom.

Episode 9: Podcasting with Students

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We all know that composition classes are becoming increasingly multimodal. One way teacher/scholars have responded to that turn is by asking students to compose in the serial audio format of podcasting.

This is a practical episode, with lots of ideas. First we'll hear about Faith Kurtyka's success teaching podcasting and social justice to first-year students in the Cortina Community at Creighton University. Then we'll hear one of the assignments shared by Jennifer L. Bowie in her 2012 article on podcasting in the composition classroom. Then the episode ends with a detailed segment from Ryan Trauman, who digs into five excellent articles on podcasting pedagogy.

I hope you're taking notes, because I kind of want to try everything here.

Episode 8: Looking into the Fish Tank: Tiny Encounters at CCCC

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At the 2015 meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC), I stuck a mic in people's faces and asked them what they care about.

The answers included ideas about specific groups outside our field that we should listen to, specific scholarly directions we could dig further into, and lots of invitations to take part in exciting work.

Teaching with the Digital Archive of Literacy Narratives

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The Digital Archive of Literacy Narratives collects stories of literacy and makes them available online to scholars, students, and anyone else who wants to listen in.

To learn more about the DALN, we'll hear in this episode from Cynthia Selfe, one of the DALN's founders; Scott Lloyd DeWitt and Kate Comer, two of its earliest supporters and users; and Michael Harker and Ben McCorkle, its current co-directors.

They cover the history of the DALN, discuss scholarly publications that rely on the archive and study its use, and share ideas for using it in composition classrooms of your own.

Locations of Writing

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In the September 2014 issue of _College Composition and Communication_, editor Kathleen Blake Yancey opened a special issue on locations of writing with ten vignettes--short reflective pieces where authors considered the meanings of the places where they write and teach. Four of those vignettes are featured here, read by their authors.

Grumble, Grumble: The Pitfalls of Gaming Pedagogy

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This is the second in a two-part series of episodes on how games intersect with pedagogies of writing and rhetoric. Its special focus is on the complexities of gaming pedagogies, especially the resistance we can expect from students and gaming communities, the social/political/material realities of gaming ecologies, and our odd relationship (and plain old fear) of play. To get there, co-editor Stephanie Vie and I interview Rebekah Shultz Colby, Richard Colby, and Jennifer deWinter. To wrap up, we have a live NES discussion, where Stephanie and Jennifer watch me play the NES and we see where the conversation takes us.

A New Hope for Games in the Classroom

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This episode's co-editor Stephanie Vie and I went on a quest to learn about the creative ways that teachers of writing and rhetoric are using games in the classroom. We found ourselves discussing gaming identity and how games can intersect the work we do in *any* class, and we got lots and lots of specific pedagogical suggestions, some involving wrestlers and naked puppets. You'll hear interviews and segments involving Samantha Blackmon, Kevin Moberly, Phill Alexander, Matt Beale, and Jason Custer. In other words: quest completed. Tune in next month for part 2 of our discussion of games and teaching.

Using Creative Commons to Make Stuff

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I went searching online for teaching-related content that you would want to hear--and I fell into a rabbit hole of ideas about copyright, the public domain, and Creative Commons. On this episode, you'll hear a brief introduction to copyright in the U.S.; a narrative of me dealing with complicated interfaces and Creative Commons licenses on Soundcloud,, Jamendo, Freesound, and YouTube; and a few resources to help you discuss this tricky stuff in your composition classes.

About this podcast

A playful, collaborative, monthly podcast on teaching writing and rhetoric in the 21st century

Hosted by Kyle Stedman, Rockford University

Also available on Stitcher ( and iTunes (

by Kyle Stedman


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