Nurturing Independence From the Start

My nephew, Tuck, has just turned eighteen. Since he could walk, he could also cast and reel a fishing pole. His father and grandfather taught him how to choose the best bait, how to find fish, how to catch, land, and decide on keeping or releasing. Tuck even knows how to filet his catches, and he makes great ceviche, as well as several main courses. He now teaches his father tricks of the fishing trade, as he is a first mate on two different charter boats. Most of us have heard the proverbial wisdom that if you give someone a fish, they eat for a day, but if you teach them to fish, they eat for a lifetime. Tuck is living proof that not only does he eat for a lifetime, but also he teaches others and shares his knowledge that much further.

This week, the authors at Two Writing Teachers share ideas for building independence in your writing workshops. Here’s a preview of the posts to come:

  • Later today, Lanny kicks off the series with a post about the importance of approximation.
  • Tomorrow, Marina follows with a post about the importance of why, both for students and for teachers.
  • On Tuesday, Beth writes about the structures of writing workshop and ways we can teach them to students.
  • Closely related to structures are routines. Stacey follows up on Wednesday with a post about the importance of establishing routines early on.
  • Independent writing projects are an important way to build independence, and Kelsey’s Thursday post shares ways to weave them into writing workshops.
  • If you’re interested in positive mindsets for writers, you won’t want to miss Betsy’s post on Friday about growth mindset.
  • On Saturday, Kathleen shares ways to inspire students to keep writing at home without mandated homework.
  • And I, Melanie, wrap up the series with the importance of repertoire in the writing lives of our students.

We will host a Twitter Chat on Monday, August 12th at 8:30 EDT, and we invite you all to join it. Find and join the conversation at #TWTBlog!

Giveaway Information:

This giveaway is for a copy of No More “I’m Done!” and No More “How Long Does It Have to Be?” by Jennifer Jacobson. Thanks to Stenhouse Publishers for donating a copy of each of these books — one book for a primary educator and one book for a secondary educator. (You must have a U.S. mailing address to win a print copy of this book.)

For a chance to win this copy of  No More “I’m Done!” or No More “How Long Does It Have to Be?”, please leave a comment about this or any blog post in this blog series by Sunday, August 11th at 6:00 p.m. EDT.

BE SURE TO WRITE DOWN THE GRADE LEVEL OR GRADE BAND YOU TEACH SO WE CAN PUT YOU IN THE RUNNING FOR THE BOOK THAT MATCHES THE GRADE BAND YOU TEACH. Betsy Hubbard will use a random number generator to pick the winner’s commenter number. The winners will be announced in the ICYMI blog post for this series on Monday, August 11th.

Please leave a valid e-mail address when you post your comment so Betsy can contact you to obtain your mailing address if you win.  From there, our contact at Stenhouse will ship the book to you. (NOTE: Your e-mail address will not be published online if you leave it in the e-mail field only.)

If you are the winner of the book, Betsy will email you with the subject line of TWO WRITING TEACHERS – NO MORE BOOKS within five days of receipt. A new winner will be chosen if a response isn’t received within five days of the giveaway announcement.