I received a question earlier this evening about what’s next in my Writing Workshop:
What do you usually do next in writing workshop? I just finished persuasive writing, and this is the first time I have done it so early in the year. I am trying to figure out the next logical step. I feel like it’s too early for memoir, and I don’t want to do poetry yet!
Here’s what’s next this year: My colleagues and I are going to be doing a mini-unit of study on notebook work with our students when they return to school in January. (Part of this mini-unit will focus on writing more reflective, thoughtful entries, while part of it will focus on revising former notebook entries collected between September and December.) Afterwards, we’re diving into Memoir. To us, it seemed like a natural place to go after the kids will have spent a few weeks writing about meaningful things in their notebooks. Hopefully one or more of their notebook pieces will turn into a seed idea for their memoir. After all, doesn’t it always seem that life topics for memoir come from the kids’ notebooks?
Here’s what’s been next (after persuasive letters) in past years: Literary Essay (seems logical to me since the kids spent the past two months writing in non-narrative genres) or Short Fiction (a complete departure from non-narrative work, which many kids welcome).
What unit of study will you be teaching when you return to school in January? Weigh-in by taking the poll below or, if you have more to say, then please leave a comment.
I am a literacy consultant who has spent over a decade working with teachers to improve the teaching of writing in their classrooms. While I work with teachers and students in grade K-6, I'm a former fourth and fifth-grade teacher so I have a passion for working with upper elementary students.
I'm the author of Craft Moves (Stenhouse Publishers, 2016) and the co-author of Jump Into Writing (Zaner-Bloser, 2021), Welcome to Writing Workshop (Stenhouse Publishers, 2019), and Day By Day (Stenhouse, 2010).