Writing: A Writer's
Boss and Secretary
Today's Snack: Enjoy carrot, celery and broccoli sticks
dipped in your favorite kind of salad dressing, with a tall glass of cranberry
notebook and No. 2 pencil
the olden days before computers, the boss in an office used to "dictate," or
say aloud, the content of a business letter to an employee acting as a
secretary would type up the letter, the boss would sign it, and off it would go
in the mail.
nobody has to "take dictation" since we can all write and print out our own
letters on computer! But learning how to listen to someone speaking, and put
those words into writing accurately, is a good skill.
you can write words fairly fluently - quickly, without a lot of fuss - you are
ready to "take dictation" from someone else.
important for helping you form a mental picture of the words, and be able to
write them rapidly and accurately. It also helps your listening skills, which
are really important for remembering facts and ideas, and putting them in
writing in an effective way.
you act as the "secretary," you write down what the "boss" says on the next
page. Go over it afterwards to see how accurate you were.
it's your turn to be the "boss," and someone else writes down what you say, you
can lean back in a chair, put your feet on the table or desk, and pretend to be
smoking a cigar like a big boss (for heaven's sake, use a straw or a carrot -
cigars aren't good for you!).
with a single word or name, and work your way up to complete sentences and then