drafting · reflective practice · writing workshop

It Feels Good…

It was one of those days where writing workshop just felt good. Here’s a little recap of the highlights.

  • First thing this morning, I implemented the things I’m learning from Martha Horn from listening to her speak and from reading her book, Talking, Drawing, Writing, which she wrote with Mary Ellen Giacobbe. Writing workshop was fantastic! I’m working in a classroom, alongside a teacher I coached my very first year in this position. Much of what I know about kindergarten I owe to her. As usual, when I’m with primary kids (especially five year olds) I think I missed my calling. (That is, until, I find myself in a middle school classroom, which was my original passion.) The way Martha and Mary Ellen slow down the process and build anticipation about making books seems to be the missing link. We are excited about our new understandings about workshop.
  • Later I met with two different teachers (at two separate times) to reflect on writing workshop. On Wednesday of this week, I get to begin a new coaching cycle with a first grade teacher. Her passion for learning and teaching is just as contagious now as I bet it was thirty years ago. I can’t wait to be part of the learning in her classroom.
  • I was in two third grade classes (the ones I’ve been blogging about). Their understanding about writing a best first draft is beginning to solidify and their energy for writing is so high that I wonder why anyone wouldn’t want to put words on the page. I’m learning to listen, really listen, in order to be the best possible teacher.
  • Finally, I ended my work day by meeting with 11 other teachers for a study group. Mary Helen Gensch and I are hosting the group. (Do you know Mary Helen’s blog? It is a goldmine of ideas for books + writing lessons.) It is completely voluntary and I’m excited to have a group of teachers willing to meet and change and imagine and learn and grow together. If you are in the area and want to join us, our next meeting is November 21. Just leave a comment and I’ll get in touch with you.

How about you? What feels good about writing workshop?

2 thoughts on “It Feels Good…

  1. I have been falling in love with the Talking, Drawing, Writing book for the two weeks. It has got me in a state of “reprogramming” as I like to call it. I had to laugh because I just posted on her book for the third day in a row and then saw your post today. I have actually started writing workshop over this week, back to the drawing board and I am not looking back. No more pushing for a product, but hopefully instead I will create some storytellers!


  2. It all sounds so good-wish I could be back there to work in your group, plus Mary Helen! She adds to my expenses with all those books recommended. What a good time you will have. I am working with a group briefly this week about independence and will be using some of your words posted lately. If we wish to move toward best first drafts, etc., there are some best teaching of things to do first. And students need to know the thinking that they will need to do also, often without help. Have a great week!


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