Diane W. Howard and Laurie Kay Sommers, editors

With Vanessa Mitchell, Judith Phillips, Margo Harris,
Trina Brown, Adam Hathaway, and Jeremy Williams

 This book combines folklife and writing background information with classroom-ready lesson plans and resources. Its basic premise is that students write best when they write about what they know. “What they know” is the people, places, and events of their lives. The “folk” in Folkwriting  links the writing process to folklife, or traditions of students’ families and communities.

These traditions are often passed on informally, by word of mouth, imitation, and observation. This workbook includes lessons on a number of folklife topics (local heroes, games, names, place, traditions of work, holiday traditions, foodways, personal treasures, calendar customs) and a wide variety of writing genres suitable for a broad range of classrooms. It was written primarily for K-12 classroom teachers in South Georgia, but educators from other locations will find much of interest. The South Georgia emphasis is evident in the folklife examples used--some of which are not found in other regions of the country--and in the use of State of Georgia Quality Core Curriculum Standards. Although many lessons have cross-disciplinary potential, the success of the folklife and writing partnership is in language arts and social studies classrooms.

  This project is supported by the Valdosta State University, Cook County Public Schools, the Georgia Humanities Council, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Endowment for the Arts, and through appropriations from the Georgia General Assembly.  

First printing, Valdosta State University, July 2002