Pensamiento Educativo. Revista de Investigación Educacional Latinoamericana

2022, 59(2), 1-13

“Is It Okay, As a Teacher, to Expect ‘At Least Something’?” Contributions from Co-labor Research to the Transformation and/or Strengthening of Teaching Practices Related to Writing in Advanced Literacy

“¿Está bien, como docente, pretender ´al menos algo´?” Aportes desde una investigación en colabor a la transformación o fortalecimiento de prácticas de enseñanza vinculadas con la escritura en la alfabetización avanzada

María Beatriz Taboada
Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET)
Universidad Autónoma de Entre Ríos (UADER)


This paper reports the findings of a project using research in co-labor carried out with secondary education teachers in Argentina. Our aim is to reconstruct tensions and challenges in situated writing teaching practices in contexts of advanced literacy from an ethnographic perspective. We retrieved various records produced by the participating teachers in the context of the experience, regarding their own teaching practices, as well as collective discussions regarding writing as theoretical object and as object of teaching and learning. The analysis shows three emerging tensions: between the prominence of writing in society and what is actually taught about writing at school; between a conception of writing as a complex social activity and a school-based conception; and between the objectives of advanced literacy and the pedagogical decisions taken. Furthermore, we highlight three potential actions that emerge strongly in the research records, the institutional approach to which may foster more equitable and democratic practices: (1) restoring the students’ voices regarding the challenges of advanced literacy, (2) questioning “simulated” writing teaching, and (3) deficit discourses in schooling.

Keywords: literacy, advanced literacy, writing, teaching practices, collaborative research


Este trabajo reporta hallazgos de un proyecto de investigación en colabor realizado con docentes de educación secundaria en Argentina. Proponemos como objetivo reconstruir tensiones y desafíos que atraviesan prácticas situadas de enseñanza de la escritura en contextos de alfabetización avanzada desde una perspectiva etnográfica. Para tal fin, recuperamos diversos registros producidos por los y las docentes participantes en el contexto de la experiencia, vinculados con las propias prácticas de enseñanza, así como con discusiones colectivas en torno a la escritura como objeto teórico, de enseñanza y de aprendizaje. El análisis muestra tres tensiones emergentes: entre el protagonismo de la escritura en la sociedad y lo que efectivamente se enseña sobre la escritura en la escuela, entre una concepción de la escritura como actividad social compleja y una concepción escolarizada, y entre los objetivos de la alfabetización avanzada y las decisiones didácticas asumidas. Recuperamos, además, tres potenciales acciones que aparecen con insistencia en los registros, asociando su abordaje institucional con la posibilidad de implementar prácticas más equitativas y democráticas: recuperación de voces de estudiantes frente a los desafíos que implica la escritura en la alfabetización avanzada, y desnaturalización de simulacros de enseñanza de la escritura, así como de diagnósticos deficitarios escolares.

Palabras clave: literacidad, alfabetización avanzada, escritura, práctica de enseñanza, investigación en colabor

María Beatriz Taboada

Jordana 373, 3260 Concepción del Uruguay, Entre Ríos, Argentina

ORCID: 0000-0003-4659-3473


The notion of literacy as a technology that is embedded in social and discursive processes (Zavala et al., 2004) is essential in order to rethink the teaching practices that we carry out in the school context, as it offers a way of linking language with what individuals do as socially situated actors (Lillis & Scott, 2007, p. 11). The notion of advanced literacy enables us to situate literacy practices in the school context, between primary and secondary education, at a level of the literacy process that seeks to produce greater autonomy in the management of reading and writing (Melgar, 2005; Schleppegrell, 2004; Taboada, 2021).

Thus, although research on the approach to school literacy processes may allow creating knowledge to reflect on and strengthen teaching and learning practices at school, we understand that the studies conducted in Argentina, addressing the school subject of Language and Literature (Cuesta, 2019) at the secondary level, do not usually address teaching practices, learning processes, or classroom interactions (Natale et al., 2019).

On the other hand, educational research has not returned to schools in many cases, which has led some educational teams to shield certain institutional spaces and practices from observation (Nussbaum, 2017). Consequently, we assume that researching educational realities requires a process of sustained dialogue to create bonds of trust that allow the construction of joint and situated knowledge. 1response to the challenges posed by research in and from schools was resorting to a co-labor research design (Gandulfo & Unamuno, 2020; Rappaport, 2007) that is ethnographically oriented, with the participation of those of us who teach the school subject of Language Arts in different places in the province of Entre Ríos, Argentina, and who are interested in understanding, strengthening, or transforming teaching advanced literacy practices. Research in co-labor differs from traditional collaborative research—in which participants join an external project—since it implies joint work from the design of the project itself. Collaboration is therefore the organizing principle of the research (Lassiter, 2005).

Within this framework, in this article we examine our teaching experiences based on the following research question: What tensions and challenges are present in situated practices of teaching writing in secondary educational institutions? We have drawn upon several research records that allowed us to reconstruct three fundamental tensions, cross-cut by different challenges.

In this article we identify some of the fundamental notions of the research, as well as the methodological decisions taken, before presenting the tensions and challenges linked to the approach to writing in school in general and in the context of advanced literacy in particular, in connection with the reference bibliography. In the conclusions of this paper, we also suggest potential actions to overcome these tensions.

Literature Review

The notion of literacy, following a sociocultural approach linked to the New Literacy Studies (Gee, 2015; Street, 2005; Zavala, 2009, among others)2, refers to diverse social practices that are situated and mediated by the written word. According to this framework, reading and writing are realized in literacy practices, that is, in cultural forms of written language use (Zavala, 2009). These practices tend to reproduce identity and power relations (Kleiman, 2019; Moreno & Sito, 2019), while articulating values, attitudes, and feelings.

In order to address writing, one of the characteristic features of the sociocultural approach is the pronounced interest in social practices, as opposed to conceptions centered exclusively on text as a linguistic object or on the individual cognitive processes involved in its creation (Atorresi & Eisner, 2021; Lillis & Scott, 2007; Zavala, 2009). In that regard, writing can be considered as a complex of resources that depend upon patterns of distribution, availability, and accessibility (Blommaert, 2013). We recognize the need for diverse resources—material, graphic, linguistic, social, cultural, etc.—and their unequal distribution in society, which has an impact on teaching, because it enables us to more accurately identify the challenges that students face.

From the standpoint of the link between literacy and formal education, we refer to a specific instance in the literacy process: advanced literacy. This is usually associated with the final level of primary education and it continues through secondary education3 before connecting with the academic and professional environments (Melgar, 2005; Taboada, 2021). Thus, literacy practices in advanced literacy can be understood as forms of participation in different spheres of society, including the educational institution itself.

Given that our research addresses advanced literacy in the context of secondary education, it is important to state that this level has been compulsory in Argentina since 2006. Despite the time that has passed since then, there are still challenges related to educational equity (Southwell, 2020).

As for the teaching of writing, research carried out in Argentine secondary schools shows that there is very little or a complete lack of work on writing genres and a greater prominence of writing of a reproductive nature—for assessment or register purposes—and occasionally approached as an object and instrument of teaching and learning (Cuesta, 2019; Rosli & Carlino, 2019).

Regarding pedagogical experiences, this paper resorts to the category of “teaching practice”, understood as an intentional and situated social intervention in the field of institutional social practices, which involves pedagogical mediations (Davini, 2015; Steiman, 2018). This allow us to embrace an invention of doing (Terigi, 2019), that is, processes in which specific modes of action emerge from professional knowledge, requirements, and contextual demands, and as a response to certain needs—in initial training, materials, etc. This invention of doing does not suffice to produce pedagogical knowledge, as intellectual work must also be done on the experience.

We understand pedagogical knowledge as “the natural product of collective critical reflection of teaching expressed in writing” (de Tezanos, 2015, p. 114). This positions teaching practices as the place where pedagogical knowledge is constructed and each teacher—given the necessarily collective nature of the work—as a producer of this knowledge, in a process that begins with the recognition of the formative nature of experiences and which requires systematic reflection on everyday practices (Delory-Momberger, 2020; Vezub, 2016) and the processes of writing associated with them. The writing in these practices is essential, because it challenges the ways in which it is developed and has a transformative and revitalizing potential for teaching (Suárez, 2021).

However, teaching knowledge seems detached from pedagogical knowledge (Rockwell & Mercado, 2003) considering certain educational policies and dynamics: While the former is mobilized in situations of practice, constructed from everyday experiences, and involves reflexivity, and therefore agency, the latter appears as requirements, as imperatives for teaching. Thus, research linked to teaching in the school subject of Language Arts has demonstrated tensions between teaching knowledge and pedagogical knowledge presented in a prescriptive way (Cuesta, 2019; Tapia, 2017).

In connection with the conception of teaching practices that we have explained, it is important to highlight the notion of agency, which is defined as “the socioculturally mediated capacity to act” (Ahearn, 2001, p. 112). Agency involves interactions between individual efforts, available resources, and contextual and structural factors, in light of different specific situations in which the subjects are neither totally free to make decisions nor completely determined by social structures (Farmasari, 2021; Priestley et al., 2015).

Finally, we should also make a brief reference to the existence of discourses—as social practices—that permeate schooling, some of the most important being the prescribed national and provincial curriculum documents5. These have a normative orientation (Lillis, 2017) regarding teaching practices and schooling as a whole, linked to what writing is and should be. This normative orientation, in connection with institutional and media discourses, usually frames deficit discourses centered on the students and emphasizing lack of knowledge, attributed to the previous level of schooling (Cuesta, 2019). These diagnoses are directly related to the expansion of secondary education and also apply to higher levels, regarding the challenges involved in academic literacy (Ávila Reyes et al., 2020; Lillis, 2017).


As we have explained, this study is part of an experience of research in co-labor (Gandulfo & Unamuno, 2020; Leyva & Speed, 2008; Rappaport, 2007) between teachers that began in 2019. In this research, we assume an interpretative epistemological position that uses a qualitative methodology to understand the phenomena in a situated way and in terms of the meanings that the participants give them (Denzin & Lincoln, 2011).

Although this research started by posing initial, broad questions about our practices (Taboada et al., 2021), in this article, we focus on the tensions and challenges that cross-cut the practices for teaching writing in secondary educational institutions where we work as teachers. To frame our approach, we provide information about those of us who participated in the experience and our contexts of participation, the techniques and instruments used to obtain data, and the ways in which we constructed meanings from them.


The project team is made up of eight teachers (Table 1) who work in secondary education, or in secondary and upper secondary education, in curricular areas related to Language Arts as a school subject or teacher training in this field. Participation in the project is voluntary and each participant has given their free and informed consent6. We have also anonymized the data.

Table 1
Profile of the participating teachers





















Rosario del Tala








C. del Uruguay








1º de Mayo

Col. San Miguel


















C. del Uruguay









C. del Uruguay
















As Table 1 shows, the secondary education teachers participating in this research experience were between 27 and 48 years of age (M=37.6), obtained their university teaching degrees between 2008 and 2018, and had been teaching for between 4 and 17 years (M=10.7). All of the teachers at this level had a high teaching workload (M=34.3), exclusively at the secondary level (n=3) or divided between secondary and the upper secondary level (n=4)7.

On the other hand, the participating teachers worked in six locations in Entre Ríos Province, belonging to three departments that are geographically close to each other8: Uruguay, Colón, and Tala.

Methods and techniques of data collection and analysis

To address the complexities inherent to the teaching practices in which we are interested, we used a qualitative and flexible research design that was ethnographically oriented (Lillis, 2008; Rockwell, 2009) and which was intended to understand phenomena from the perspective of the participants and in relation to the context. Ethnography requires the sustained engagement of the researcher over time, the coordination of diverse data sources, and deep theorizing (Blommaert, 2007; Lillis, 2008) that connects emic and etic aspects. Based on this framework, we prepared various records, as shown in Table 2.

Table 2
Records prepared





Participant/s responsible

Narratives of teaching practices


* Teaching practices

Involve thick description of proposed activities

Secondary-level teachers

Autoethnographic texts


* Teaching practices

* Experience of research

Oriented towards describing one’s own practices and reflecting on them.

All members of the team

Field notes


* Collective work on didactic and research experiences

Documenting the collective work in a field journal


We opt for using narratives (NP) because of their reflective and transformative potential (Yedaide & Porta, 2017). We also use autoethnography (AT)—as a narrative form of knowledge generation (Ellis et al., 2015)—because it allows us to rethink our teaching practices and the experiences we undergo in the research, considering how and why we think and act as we do. Based on these records, we assume a reflective position on our practices, first individually—when constructing them—and then collectively, in the shared work of discussion, analysis, and interpretation, of which we keep a record in the field notes (FN).

The field notes highlight a practice of participant observation that is sustained in the development of the research, they appear in the field journal of the project, and the records are returned to the group as materials for shared work. By using this instrument, we aim to address the way in which we construct our actions (Nussbaum, 2017) and recover our own name (Corona Benkin, 2012), that is, our possibilities of naming and naming ourselves.

In light of the aforementioned corpus of records, in this paper we are interested in collecting narratives of teaching practices (NP) for analysis that relate to didactic experiences of teaching writing (n=7), autoethnographic texts (AT) that address aspects related to teaching writing in schools (n=8), and field notes (FN) of the project that focus on team discussions about writing as a theoretical, teaching, and learning object (n=7). All of them were created between 2020 and 2021.

By addressing the records, we seek to recognize tensions that exist in the experiences narrated from the articulation of analytical processes of interpretation, reconstruction, contrast, contextualization, and explanation (Rockwell, 2009). In this process, we prioritize an emic perspective—internal, participant, emerging from the analyzed discourses —using initial open and inclusive coding (Rapley, 2014) based on emerging codes. This allowed us to maximize the similarities and minimize the differences in order to advance to a more comprehensive coding later. We do not consider this process as linear, but rather as recursive, in connection with etic categories linked to theoretical decisions made in the design.

In the next section we present the tensions that, as teachers, we identify in our teaching practices regarding writing in advanced literacy contexts. In order to do so, we cite some brief excerpts from the records by way of a detailed overview (Arfuch, 2005).

Description and Discussion of Results

The analysis allowed us to reconstruct three tensions that, with certain nuances, are present in our teaching practices:

Going beyond the clear connection of these tensions, we will present each of them independently, identifying the challenges that maintain them in each case.

Tensions between the prominence of writing and what is actually taught

In light of the recognition of the importance of writing both in educational institutions and in society, as well as the need to support teaching of writing in the different curricular spaces and at the various educational levels, our accounts of practices show disparate experiences of teaching and supporting writing9, framed by institutional and extra-institutional challenges and conditioning factors. Similarly, only occasionally do the records show systematic work on the writing process or the narration of didactic sequences that are explicitly oriented toward teaching aspects related to writing.

The discussions held in the team allow us to reconstruct a continuity between these interpretations and our diagnoses of teaching writing in school in relation to three common concerns. One of these involves the quantity—little is written—another the challenges that our students face in writing with advanced literacy—what resources they have and how they use them—and, finally, the opportunities for the involvement of teachers in these processes.

These concerns emerge from the collective work, considering the few interventions aimed at teaching advanced literacy: “(Students) are expected to know already”, “they should learn by osmosis” (FN, interventions by B10 and D, 2020). Thus, there is a shift of responsibilities toward the students based on the knowledge they are assumed to already have or the notion that they should learn to write by writing, from spontaneous interactions with the texts (Navarro, 2019). The gap between what is “expected” at this level—prior knowledge, writing, and independent learning—and the resources that students contribute in school literacy practices lead to deficit diagnoses that are mainly focused on student performance and the responsibilities attributed to the elementary school (Cuesta, 2019).

Consequently, although we documented experiences of teaching and accompaniment of writing, we acknowledge that most of them are individual pedagogical decisions, mostly framed within the school subject Language Arts, and that “isolated work isn’t useful either” (FN, intervention by C, 2020). These reflections establish the need to construct institutional agreements that allow systematic writing across the curriculum (Bazerman et al., 2016). Coordinating planning decisions between teachers therefore emerges as a salient institutional challenge.

Thus, the recognizable prominence of writing in society and in the educational institution itself calls for greater opportunities from the school as a whole for our students to be involved in literacy practices, based on institutional agreements that allow more assiduous, sustained, coordinated, and scaffolded work around the written word at the level. Likewise, in order to overcome this first tension, we understand that it is essential to emphasize the cultural, complex, and situated nature of literacy practices in our teaching interventions.

Tensions between conceptions of writing

The aforementioned tensions are also connected with different conceptions of writing:

The complexity of writing is present in the texts produced in the experience and leads us to rethink our teaching interventions from the position of writers themselves. A dialogue thus arises between “our own and other’s writing” which, in turn, confronts us with three different objects: writing as a theoretical object, as an object of teaching, and as an object of learning.

In contrast, the examination of the practices shows a “prominence of school-based writing” (FN, intervention by D, 2021), characterized by the existence of a single reader—the teacher—and which is mostly decontextualized. They therefore appear as forms of participation that are exclusively linked to the school environment—for example, writing on a topic that does not respond to a specific genre; “loose things” (FN, intervention by E, 2021) written at school and for the school. the This coincides with the limited presence or complete lack of work on written genres observed in various studies (Cuesta, 2019; Rosli & Carlino, 2019).

This school-based conception is based on routines, “ways of doing” that are replicated and instituted in the dynamics of the school:

Those “ways of doing” in schools that people keep (we keep) doing because they work, because of lack of time to examine them or simply out of habit (AT, B, 2021).

The “lack of time” concerns material conditions of teaching work as a dimension that frames and partly sustains the routines. Within these conditions there are factors such as the existence of courses with large numbers of students, the lack of institutional time for work among teachers, and the dearth of clear guidelines in the current curricular documents, to which an “ideal and unreal perspective” is attributed (TA, B, 2021), as opposed to the “real”, which is situated, and which is placed under strain specifically by the material conditions in which we teachers carry out our duties. We therefore observe a gap between teaching knowledge and prescriptive pedagogical knowledge in the discipline (Cuesta, 2019; Tapia, 2017).

Finally, we understand that, thanks to the recurrence of these “ways of doing”, which have become routines, the school continues to prioritize certain historically constructed literacy practices (Zavala, 2009). This situation is even more complex if we consider the challenges related to educational equity faced by Argentine secondary schools. Therefore, in order to overcome this tension, there must be progress in building a coherent and pedagogically feasible relationship between writing as a theoretical, teaching, and learning object, based on work of collective critical reflection that is in communication with our own experiences.

Tensions between pedagogical goals and decisions in advanced literacy

According to our records—AT and FN—the pedagogical goals most frequently associated with advanced literacy and the pedagogical decisions made are that students learn to write for social life and for the higher education levels. While the former evokes a gap between the uses of the written word in society and in school, the latter is usually linked, in terms of pedagogical decisions, to the reading and writing of expository-explanatory texts. In addition to this, there is an appreciation of writing as an “opportunity to speak” that restores the agency of the subjects—as “protagonists”—and the possibility of constructing one’s own voice.

The small writing exercise challenged them, made them protagonist subjects (NP, A, 2021).

The implementation of shared and scaffolded micro-experiences of writing12—a “small exercise” in A’s record—is constructed as a response to the challenges that involve practices in advanced literacy and attempts to overcome the dominant “school-based writing”, while also restoring the craftsmanship of planning and teacher protagonism. In this regard, the records show the way in which teaching agencies articulate individual—and often solitary—efforts, available resources, and contextual and structural factors in an invention of doing that, in our practices, occurs mostly in these micro-experiences.

In this regard, based on a recognition of the prominence of writing in society, its complexity, and its situated nature, and in communication with objectives established in curricular documents, the greatest challenge we encounter in our practices at this level is related to a didactic decision making in isolation:

We often lack opportunities to analyze our experiences in a systematic manner, and our reflections on what we do remain in the comments in the teachers’ lounge or in the hallways at recess (AT, B, 2021).

This statement by B refers to what is not said: there are no references to institutional spaces for discussion and, if they exist—in the form of institutional conferences—they are not enough for sustained work that allows us to reduce the tensions between pedagogical goals and decisions in advanced literacy. Teachers’ agency in the face of the challenges of literacy, pedagogical decisions taken alone, and reflection on our own experiences from which we seek to build pedagogical knowledge are therefore confronted with the real opportunities for collective construction and critical reflection that characterize our school realities.

The autoethnographic texts are thus filled with questions that challenge our practices and which we, nevertheless, would need to share with colleagues at school:

How can we think about permanence at the secondary level without thinking about advanced literacy? ... I still wonder if it’s possible to talk about admission, learning, permanence, and graduation from the secondary level without problematizing the issue of writing (AT, D, 2019).

The quote above from D refers to challenges related to educational equity in Argentine secondary schools, in this case based on the need to guarantee not only admission, but also learning, permanence, and graduation. As D states, this is not possible without problematizing writing in advanced literacy and, therefore, without rethinking the challenges present in the literacy practices we propose to our students.

In this regard, we can also highlight the question that we included in the title of this paper and which is part of a record made by A from a final assessment in which one of his students “did not write anything at all.” In his autoethnography, the questions abounded, some of which we reproduce in the following excerpt:

How does a student feel when they can’t say anything about a subject they have studied for a year? What does a teacher do in that situation?

What did I fail to do to get ((name of a student))13 to be able to at least say something? Is it okay, as a teacher, to expect “at least something”? (AT, A, 2021).

Teacher A reconstructs the impossibility of one of their students of saying anything in the context of a literacy practice, but also questions this event from a sociocultural and critical position with their teaching role: A assumes the experience as complex and situated—in connection with other school literacy practices—and recognizes the existence of feelings and social relationships. What does this student feel? What do we do as teachers in this situation in which there are feelings? What did we do and what could we have done—”what did I miss?”, in A’s words—in the context of our teaching practices? The final question, moreover, installs a “should be” in the teachers’ reflections, which is linked to prescriptive pedagogical knowledge.

In view of the tension between advanced literacy objectives and pedagogical decisions made, we believe it is essential to promote spaces and times for institutional and collective work for teachers to reflect on their own practices, aimed at the production of pedagogical knowledge.


With the question we posed for this article, we identified tensions between the prominence of writing in society and in the educational institution itself, and what is actually taught about writing at school, between a conception of writing as a complex and situated social activity and a school-based conception, and between advanced literacy objectives and the didactic decisions taken. Similarly, we recognized solitary work as a fundamental challenge—and which, in a certain manner, is common to all of the aforementioned tensions—which limits the opportunities to build pedagogical agreements and produce pedagogical knowledge.

Given this situation, there are disparate and occasional experiences of teaching and supporting writing, along with other writing practices that are not necessarily scaffolded, in which students are expected to bring into play knowledge that has already been built. The discrepancies between the expectations of teachers and productions of text give rise to discourses of deficiencies that are attributed to students and linked to knowledge assumed to have been acquired at previous levels of education, linked to enigmatic institutional practices, in continuity with those addressed by Lillis (2001) for academic writing. Similarly, in contrast to the possibility of bridging that gap by strengthening experiences of teaching and support, we observe the expectation that students learn from spontaneous interactions with texts (Navarro, 2019), or “by osmosis”, in the words of D.

However, the micro-experiences recorded—activities in which writing is assumed as a challenge and object of teaching—which are often designed in solitude, reveal agencies for an invention of doing, a situated action in the face of certain vacancies and based on teaching knowledge. These micro-experiences—recorded here nominally and from shared discussion considering narratives and autoethnographic texts—and which are still disparate, enable us to rethink the relationships between complex writing and school-based conceptions of writing, as well as between objectives of advanced literacy and didactic decisions taken, in contexts that are challenged by the institutional time available and the material working conditions. They therefore constitute dimensions of our own practices that require more profound analysis because they allow us to address the way in which the “ideal” encounters the “real”.

In view of the tensions described above, we are also interested in mentioning three potential actions that persistently appear in the ethnographic records, associating the way they are approached institutionally with the possibility of designing more equitable and democratic practices: the restoration of students’ voices considering the challenges implied by writing in advanced literacy, in communication with the notion of agency (Ahearn, 2001; Ávila Reyes et al., 2020); the questioning of “simulations” of writing teaching(FN, 2021)—in contrast with explicit experiences of teaching and supporting writing—as well as questioning the deficit attributed to the students.

Nevertheless, the need to address this contrasts with the real opportunities for dialogue and shared work in schools. In this respect, we believe that it is essential to create times and spaces for collective reflection that allow us to restore the formative nature of the experiences and the role of teachers as producers of pedagogical knowledge.

Acknowledgements: Thanks to Colectivo Caminantes, the origin of this work.

Funding: Project PICT-2020-SERIEA-01466, Agencia Nacional de Promoción de la Investigación.

The original paper was received on December 23, 2021
The reviewed paper was received on June 7, 2022
The paper was accepted on June 26, 2022


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1. This paper constitutes an individual report that is part of a collective experience and, therefore, we use the first-person plural as a mark of the conditions under which it was produced. However, we may occasionally differentiate between the collective and individual with regard to the responsibilities assumed.

2. For a further discussion of the sociocultural approach and literacy studies in Latin America, we suggest you see Moreno & Sito (2019) and Atorresi & Eisner (2021).

3. The Argentine education system is structured in four levels associated with theoretical ages: early education (45 days to 5 years), primary (6 to 11-12 years), secondary (12-13 to 17 years), and upper secondary education. However, the actual age of those who attend school is not a stable factor.

4. Translated from Spanish.

5. In Argentina, the prescribed national curriculum is represented by the Common Basic Contents (1996) and the Priority Learning Nuclei (2006, for the secondary level). The different provinces also drafted their own curricular designs, which, in the case of the Province of Entre Ríos, was approved in 2010-2011.

6. The research is framed within the Lineamientos para el comportamiento ético en las Ciencias Sociales y Humanidades (Guidelines for ethical behavior in the Social Sciences and Humanities) (CONICET, 2006).

7. Participant H worked at the upper secondary level and assumed the role of coordinator of the proposal.

8. The greatest distance between the locations mentioned is 143 Km, between Concepción del Uruguay and Rosario del Tala.

9. We name as experiences of teaching and assisting writing those in which there is a clear didactic intention to address it as an object of teaching and learning.

10. In each excerpt cited, we identify the type of record —narrative of practices [NP], autoethnographic text [AT], field note [FN] —, participant/s —according to the letter assigned in Table 1—, and the year it was made.

11 We use quotation marks for expressions that come from our records.

12. The term ‘micro-experience’ is intended to capture the singular and artisanal nature of these small teaching interventions.

13. We use double parenthesis to introduce modifications or notes to the original records.