I am uneasy referring to myself as an author. I have writers I admire and I know there’s a vast divide between us, but I write. I enjoy writing; I write to improve my voice and my craft all in an effort to teach my students what it means to be a writer. As an educator I know all my students ARE writers. I don’t qualify who is and who is not a writer by the quality of their writing. I am working to give myself this same level of acceptance as a writer.
You might be so completely used to your classroom arrangement that it seems normal to you — but it maybe could be better.
How do you structure your workshop to work for all personalities?
Knowing what to teach is just as important as knowing how to teach. Here are five resources that will help with the what. Bonus: some are free!
Naturally, April seems to be the month to introduce poetry units of study as either part of writing or reading workshop, and that is a lovely celebration to look forward to. But, why wait until April? Why not bring the power of poetry into our workshops from the very beginning of the school year?
I attended Kathleen Tolan’s “Once You Have Taught Workshops for Years, How Do You Go from Good to Great? Tap the Power of Peer Conferring and Supporting Student Independence and Goal-Setting.” Workshop at… Continue reading
The heart map is a great tool for helping students find personally meaningful topics, but used year after year, it might feel a little stale. Writing territory maps is another option!
Let’s remember that the real work of writing workshop is writing.
Choice Brings Agency and Focus The multitude of choices open to learners today has brought more authenticity and agency to our classroom. These opportunities have refocused how we plan, write, learn, and our roles… Continue reading
One of the biggest challenges you might face in writing workshop is this: getting kids to see the power and purpose of revision. Here are a few tips for helping kids understand how important and rewarding revision can be, organized by writing process phases.
I hosted a writing camp this summer! It gave students some inspiration and gave me a little warm-up on getting back in the school groove.
Writing flash fiction can be liberating, exhilarating, and great writing process practice.
If it’s Tuesday, it’s time to share your slice of life stories here at #TWTBlog.
This year, I’m reaching back into habits of old and carving out time to write during that first day. Here are some things I will keep in mind…
Find out what sprinkled cupcakes and figurative language instruction have to do each other!
What can we say to ourselves to affirm the power of writing? What words will help us move forward when the going gets tough? Thinking about class writing mantras…
A writing workshop thrives on relationships and builds them at the same time.
Writers within a community understand the importance of their writing community and work to maintain its existence. Because the students value their writing community, they also feel accepted and free to try new ideas, take risks, and push themselves to be their personal best. They feel encouraged internally and externally.
When I visit a classroom, one of the first things I often say to kids is, “Today, please don’t erase. I want to see ALL the great work you are doing as a writer. When you erase, your work disappears!” Often, this is what kids are accustomed to and they continue working away. But sometimes, kids stare at me as if I’ve got two heads.