TWT Winter Recess and Holiday Wishes

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It is the time of year we are pausing at Two Writing Teachers and taking a short winter break. While we’re looking forward to our blogging break, we have a lot in store for 2020!
Find out more in this post.

Something Do-Able to Try: The Editing Minute

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Most of us probably do it without even thinking much about it, but our young writers might not have developed this important habit.

Interview with Teacher and Author Kate Narita + Giveaway

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4th grade teacher and published author, Kate Narita, answers my questions today about being a writer and an educator who is currently in the classroom. Be sure to comment for a chance to win a copy of Kate’s book 100 Bugs! A Counting Story, a class set of bookmarks, and a 15 minutes Skype with Kate!

Write. Share. Give.

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It’s a great day for a slice of life story! What stories must you share today?

Three Ways To Make Your Conferring More Effective

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I’ve been trying to improve my own skills as I sit down next to writers throughout my years of teaching writing, and there is so much more to conferring than the three ideas that I’m sharing in this post.

Six Essential Acts of Kindness

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Kindness is an essential part of teaching life. According to Fred Rogers, “There are three ways to ultimate success: The first way is to be kind. The second way is to be kind. The third way is to be kind.”

Communicating Clear Expectations for Writing Workshop

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Words, time, language. All of these factors can be challenges when communicating efficiently and effectively with families. When in doubt, turn to creating a short video to communicate clear and concise expectations.

Why We Should Help Children Lean On Writing in Hard Times

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Seven reasons why we should help children lean on writing in hard times (with examples from a first grade classroom).

Write. Share. Give.

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It’s a great day for a slice of life story! What magic might your words create today?

Focus Lessons: A Review and Giveaway!

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Reading Ralph Fletcher’s newest book, Focus Lessons, revealed memories of my childhood much the way photos can be revealed in a pan of solution. Slowly, vividly, and magically.

Finding Interdisciplinary Opportunities in Writing Workshop

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What happens when the next unit in third grade writing workshop is poetry and the classroom teacher stumbles across an anthology of bilingual poetry? This post describes how a third-grade homeroom teacher and a Spanish teacher collaborated to implement an interdisciplinary, bilingual poetry unit.

Write. Share. Give.

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What is happening in your corner of the world? Share your story.

A Few Reflections and Shares From NCTE 2019

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For the last few days, I have had the privilege of attending the National Council of Teachers of English Convention in Baltimore, Maryland. While there were many colleagues and friends who shared the experience, I know many others couldn’t attend. I’m sure there are others who will share in the upcoming weeks, but for now, in somewhat of a post-convention haze, I’m scrolling through my notes and pulling out some of my favorite quotes and ideas from my experiences.

Turn and Talk

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One of the greatest benefits I have had in my classroom, that encompasses all things literacy, has been the addition of purposeful talk. When it comes to inviting students to think and learn… Continue reading

Using Inquiry to Lift Language Conventions

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As middle school teachers, we know grammar and language conventions have likely been taught to our writers in previous years. But why don’t they stick? Here are a few ideas around teaching grammar and language conventions using an inquiry approach…

Finding Accessible Fonts for Classroom Use

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Fonts that look whimsical and childlike may place a stumbling block in front of students with language-based learning disabilities, such as Dyslexia. Get tips from four industry professionals who will help you find an accessible font without sacrificing personality.

Tuesday SOL!

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What’s new in your November? Share a story, read a story, and join a community.

In Case You Missed It: Reaching Your Writers

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Our hope is that this blog series helps to bridge the divides between how we teach writing and how students learn writing because we all believe not only in the importance of writing, but also that all children can learn to write– and learn to write well– and even like writing!

Communication, Collaboration, and Clarity: Reaching Your Writers

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The more we can communicate, collaborate, and empower the people we work with, both adults and students, so that they know and understand the learning that should be happening in our writing classrooms, the more we will see that learning happen. When we all know what we’re working on and we have the tools and systems to support our pathways, great things happen!

Rituals and Transitions: Reaching Your Writers

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When writing workshop rituals become woven into the daily grooves of the writing community, cohesive safe zones develop. The consistency of rituals in a classroom helps students transition within the workshop environment smoothly… Well-established rituals create the space for students to concern themselves less with movement and more with the work of a writing.