agency · collaboration · small group · student engagement · Student ownership

Increase the Number of Teachers in the Room with Student-Led Small Groups

An extra teacher is always a gift, especially when working with young authors. But what if we looked for teachers within those tiny writers?

oral language · storytelling · writing workshop

Talking it Out: Oral Language as a Tool for Revision

It’s no secret that storytelling helps children develop a sense of story. It’s no secret that oral language supports kids who don’t yet have the mechanics of writing. And it’s no secret that storytelling and oral language allow students to compose writing in a low-risk, often fun way. What many don’t realize, however, is that oral language can support writing throughout the writing process, and that learners of all ages - through adulthood! - can benefit from bringing oral language into the picture. In this post, I’ll share a few activities that highlight the way oral language can strengthen writing instruction. Focused on later parts of the writing process, these activities support revision and feedback. I’ll explain each activity, tell you why I love it so much, and offer tips for adapting each one for different learners.

agency · community · feedback · goals · management · routines

How do we Know When our Workshops are Working?

Launching a writing workshop is hard work. Intentional work. What are those “look fors” that let us know that our workshops are gelling? That community is being built, routines are being established, and writing work is happening?

midworkshop interruption

The Mid-Workshop Interruption: An Opportunity for Instruction During the Workshop

We maximize our teaching time when we look for opportunities to instruct our students at different times during a writing block. The mid-workshop interruption is a consistent way to gather your class together to raise the level of their work day after day.