Using concepts borrowed from the “Transformation” and “Enthusiasm” groups from faculty professional development, students in Composition 1 were given a hands-on (hook) activity paired with reflection to learn about process analysis.
In two groups, students were given separate “how-to” videos on how to make different types of slime. After watching the videos, students composed process analyses, or directions in essay format, on how to make their concoctions. They then exchanged their process analyses with each other and proceeded to follow the other group’s instructions.
Students could only follow the written process analysis, and could not receive any help from the author group. They were surprised to learn that some of the directions were not exactly clear or detailed enough—specifically involving measurements and glitter.
The class then reflected on what they would do differently if they composed their process analyses again. The discussion specifically focused on direction clarity, and step-by-step transitions in both process analysis and other writing. Although the slime wasn’t exactly like the videos, the students came away with an understanding of the importance of thorough and detailed writing in process analysis.