Here's another reminder from Ms. Routman. One thing she sees a lot of in schools is what she calls "So what" writing. So much of what students write doesn't say anything interesting or important. The remedy for this is AUDIENCE. Every piece of writing needs to have an authentic audience. After all, if there is no audience (including self), what's the point of writing?
I really think this tendency to assign writing for no apparent reason leads to much of the student's apathy about writing specifically and school work, in general. We need to help students make the connections between their work in school and real tasks that they will do in life, whether it's writing, reading to understand, or doing math. All of these skills are used throughout life. I do believe that some of the lack of motivation that students develop is because they see the work they are doing in school as pointless.
Therefore, the burden is on us to make that work relevant, for it truly is relevant. So, let's get those authentic writing tasks every day and watch our students shine.