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Engaging with writing - does the kind of pen matter?

Discussion in 'English' started by fred1964, May 12, 2019.

  1. fred1964

    fred1964 New commenter

    Does your school or college have a rule on what colour pen the students must use, and what colour pen you must use for marking?

    If so, does it work for you and for those you teach or does it not matter?
  2. gruoch

    gruoch Occasional commenter

    Good idea to get kids used to using black as thy have to for the exams.
    Don't get me started on pen colours for marking.
  3. fred1964

    fred1964 New commenter

    In higher functional skills English there's no requirement to use black, only at entry level, though I take your point in general. Please talk about coloured pens for marking though. We've just been told that students must use black and teachers must mark in blue. I'm struggling to see the educational value of this.
  4. gruoch

    gruoch Occasional commenter

    For GCSE the use of black is compulsory.
    There is no educational value inherent in any marking colour, but it's a good idea that it's not the same colour that the student is using.
  5. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    we hve set colours, so you can see what each wrtten comment is for. one colour for main work, one colour for teachers marking, one colour for self improvement, one colour for marking and commenting on a peers work.

    It makes it very clear, when you open a book, to see what exactly it all means

    teacher marking in blue is silly though, it isn't going to stand out at all
  6. varcolac

    varcolac Occasional commenter

    Yeah this is pretty common. Kids write in black, I write in blue, they redraft/edit in blue and peer/self assess in green. Makes sense as I can flick through a book and see if they've been responding to feedback and correcting their mistakes.

    There was a phase some years ago where some well-meaning but deluded people on various schools' leadership teams thought that "red is too aggressive" so tried to convince teachers to mark in green, or purple, or some other such nonsensical colour. I ignored them. Kinds still did well.

    I'm still convinced those people had mates in the purple ink industry.
  7. gruoch

    gruoch Occasional commenter

    The purple pen of progress.
  8. armandine2

    armandine2 Established commenter

    The squat pen rests; snug as a gun.
    A_Million_Posts likes this.
  9. neddyfonk

    neddyfonk Lead commenter

    The title asks about what kind of pen ( not colour). For writing nowadays I prefer a thick black gel pen with a rubber grip that keeps flowing till the ink runs out. I used to buy Pilot, but switched to a cheap alternative from Adsa ( anagram ) , currently 3 for a quid. I used to use them for drawing too but switched back to dip pens with a great nib I found. Pupils that actually take pride in their writing should be ( in my view) encouraged to take their writing to a higher level with a calligraphy pen. Whatever, best to avoid thin, cheap biros that fail and give a very unsatisfactory scratchy look.
    Excuse me, I need to get on with practising my Copperplate font on vellum.
    jarndyce likes this.
  10. OneLooseCrank

    OneLooseCrank Occasional commenter

    Definitely a disconnect between the thread title and the opening comment!
    Other than this, I have no real input... other than to more talk about ink colour; red is too aggressive, green is to septic, purple and pink are childishly diminishing, yellow is illegible, black is for the students, blue is too similar to black... so we'd best do no marking at all!
    Problems in education solved.
    jarndyce likes this.
  11. jarndyce

    jarndyce Occasional commenter

    Give the kids a bit of freedom, as long as they write in black for exams and they're not using the same colour as you. Some of them really like to organise their notes with different colours, and they often have the clearest and most useful books when it comes to revise.

    When I was in the Upper VI, I hated History, but it was part of my university offer and I needed an A. In effort to change my attitude, I brought myself a special notepad (with lovely paper) and a new fountain pen with purple ink (!) that I only used for this subject. It sort of worked. Well, I got an A.

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