Ali provided us with the opportunity to work in small groups to go through the centers. This was useful since we were able to engage with the books, do the work, and think about predictable problems. For instance, one thing you might want to add are the task cards are reminders of what students need to do first and then next at a center. For instance, first, students should analyze the books and the examples on the task cards. Second, students should try this out in their own writing (possibly in a few different ways).
- Teach students accountable talk, how to read directions, how to take responsibility to revise their own writing in advance of working in centers.
- Plan centers once you’ve done two days of revision so students get a new perspective on how to revise using mentor texts.
- Be purposeful in your text choice at the centers. You can level the books in the centers.
- You don’t teach a minilesson on the day you’re doing centers.
- You can do centers two times across a unit of study.
Many thanks to Ali for granting permission to share her task cards on TWT!
Are you going to have-a-go with inquiry-based centers the next time your students are revising?
Have your students done centers in the past? If so, how has it gone?
I am a literacy consultant who has spent the past dozen years working with teachers to improve the teaching of writing in their classrooms. While I work with teachers and students in grades 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).