It validates the efforts students have been making over the last year.
Our own work – writing, digital creation, invention – is no different, but so often we don’t keep multiple drafts, or think about the steps we make along the way.
Students who started studying with me last fall and continued on this spring now have seven journal entries that they can compare, allowing them to literally track their improvement in French from beginning to end.
Since it can be hard to realize the progress one makes along the way while learning a foreign language, these drafts provide written proof that their language skills are improving through this process.
Oftentimes, after a few days’ or weeks’ absence from the archive, I would return to find that I couldn’t remember where I’d left off.
Very quickly, I began to understand the importance of a research journal.