It’s the middle of January. Where I live, that means blustery weather, dreary forecasts, and ALL the snow gear. It’s also a good time to think ahead to spring, which promises warmer temperatures, more sunshine, and – of course! – all the stories our students will share in the 11th Annual Classroom SOLSC!
Yesterday, Beth posted the overview of the 16th Annual SOLSC, which is for adults. Today, I’d like to answer some frequently asked questions about the Classroom Slice of Life Story Challenge.
What exactly is the Classroom Slice of Life Story Challenge?
The Classroom Slice of Life Story Challenge is modeled on the Slice of Life Story Challenge:
- Students take on the challenge to write each day of April.
- Students can write in a notebook or they can blog online.
- For students crafting blog posts, teachers provide the link to class blogs on a Padlet.
- Participating teachers (or perhaps even students!) can visit the Padlet, click on the link to other classes’ blogs, and read and comment on student writing.
Who can participate in the Classroom Slice of Life Story Challenge?
Two Writing Teachers is a community that believes in the power of educators writing. Therefore, educators who sign up their students for the 11th Annual Classroom SOLSC are strongly encouraged to take part in the 16th Annual SOLSC during the month of March.
Students who participate should be 18 and under, and they need an adult sponsor who can link to that child / student’s blog on their behalf.
I have a LOT on my plate right now. Why should I add this on top of everything?
That certainly is the million dollar question! Yes, the Classroom Challenge takes a degree of commitment. Most participants:
- Give time for students to write each day.
- Post a link to class blogs each week.
- Visit other class blog sites.
From there, the level of commitment is up to you, your students, and what you are able to accomplish over the course of the month. Spring instruction can be overwhelming for teachers, but the Classroom Challenge doesn’t have to be.
As Katherine Neagle Sokolowski beautifully said, “Blogging is a way to help students develop voice, a sense of audience, build digital citizenship, sharpen writing skills and connect to each other in new ways. It is also a way for students to process all their emotions and capture their questions during these uncertain times.”
I really can’t manage the March Challenge, but want my students to do the April Challenge. Is there a way to participate?
One of the foundational beliefs we have at Two Writing Teachers is that educators who write, become better teachers of writing. It’s important for teachers to “live” the challenges of written expression, and it’s important for students to see their teachers working and writing alongside them.
If you are unable to participate in the individual Slice of Life Story Challenge, but feel strongly that you’d like your students to participate in April, we ask that you somehow find a way to write alongside your students in April. We’d even love to see you share the fruits of your labor on our weekly “Slice of Life” posts each Tuesday throughout April!
Where and when can I sign up?
If you plan to participate in the SOLSC in March, you may sign up for the Classroom SOLSC by entering your information into the Padlet whenever you’re ready! You can sign up on the Padlet anytime before April 2, 2023.
How often will TWT post about the Classroom SOLSC?
Beginning on Sunday, March 26th, Classroom SOLSC posts go live on Sunday mornings though the end of April. The posts are meant to provide tips, inspiration and encouragement for educators who are coaching students in the challenge. The link to the Padlet will be part of the post. The Padlet will be the place to find other classes who are participating in the challenge.
Will there be prizes for the Classroom SOLSC?
TWT does not give prizes for participants in the Classroom SOLSC. However, we do offer the chance to feel rewarding connections, establish partnerships with other teachers, and to have a proud sense of accomplishment for you and your students!
Individual teachers have often chosen different ways to celebrate students who have taken part in the challenge. Some teachers have awarded students with digital badges (linked in the resources below) for accomplishing different writing challenges on the way to blogging for the whole month, while others have held slice of cake or slice of pizza parties for students who completed the challenge. Be on the lookout for some fun tracking and celebration ideas in our Sunday posts!
Helpful Resources for the Classroom SOLSC
Need support or resources to get yourself started? Click the links below!