I think this teacher has it exactly right. She is teaching her students how to write short, concise methods that express all necessary thoughts in a short space–namely for text messages or Twitter.
And short isn’t necessarily a shortcut. When you have only a sentence or two, there’s nowhere to hide. I’m not suggesting that colleges eliminate long writing projects from English courses, but maybe we should save them for the second semester. Rewarding concision first will encourage students to be economical and innovative with language. Who knows, we might even start to leave behind text messages and comment threads that our civilization can be proud of.
Writing an effective Tweet (less than 140 characters) is quite difficult. No one wants to read long items. Teachers should promote this skill. FTW.