Meeting with my VPOD group has reminded me how important it is to establish a relationship with the writers who come into the Ott; this relationship can be fostered through the creation of a positive environment. Active listening is essential for meaningful conversations to be had, and this kind of listening can come in different forms. Verbal and nonverbal acknowledgments can be equally beneficial in regards to communicating information and making the writer feel comfortable in the Ott.
I was also reminded of how to approach and set goals for different kinds of conferences. In future conferences where writers come with a longer essay or project, I think it will be helpful to ask the writer to orally summarize the parts of writing that we didn’t get a chance to directly look over in our conference. This may help the writer self-assess his or her writing and further think about the sequence and clarity of his or her work. Ultimately, seeing the different questioning strategies that my peers used helped me think about how to make the writer more involved and engaged in the writing process.