A clear teaching point helps students understand the work, and makes your conference more memorable. A concisely stated teaching point is also is a tool for keeping your conference focused and effective.
Conferring with young writers is far too complex to boiled down to just one important aspect. But… if you had to name the most important part of a writing conference, what would it be?
Need help writing strategies that are explicit and kid-friendly? Check out this excerpt from DIY Literacy.
A formula for writing clear teaching points
A guide to crafting your own teaching points for 1:1 conferences, strategy lessons, minilessons, mid-workshop interruptions, and share sessions.
What were your teaching points in today’s minilessons? Here were mine: 4th grade feature article (informational writing) unit: Writers use specific words about the subject when writing informational texts. 4th … Continue Reading Today’s Teaching Points
I’ve been intentional about writing a teaching point for each of my lessons in Reading and Writing Workshop. Last night I typed them all to share with my students. Starting … Continue Reading Writing Teaching Points
LINE BREAKS!!!!! So important and so mystifying for kids who are just starting to write poetry. They see them all the time, they know what they are, but they don’t … Continue Reading Tomorrow’s Mid-Workshop Teaching Point will be about…
It takes more than a new writer’s notebook and preferred writing utensils to get kids writing! Teaching students a variety of strategies to generate writing in their notebooks is helpful if we want them to view their writer’s notebooks as both a workbench and a playground.
When this scenario happened to me (years ago), it did give me pause. As a teacher of writers, I am not the conventions police—I have always been the kind of writer who values content over conventions in the workshop. This is not to say I do not teach conventions or have high expectations for their use. However, it would be fair to say that this particular situation challenged me to think about grammar, punctuation, and spelling differently—shifting the way I approached conventions in the classroom going forward.
The book you need right now. Jen Serravallo’s newest book for remote education has hit shelves. Take a peek and enter the giveaway!
Sarah Zerwin is workshop to her core, and she has found ways to ensure that her assessment practices are not sending conflicting messages to kids. Point-Less will challenge readers to reflect and inspire them to advocate for change.
Seen, Valued, Heard: The Riskiness and Power of Teaching Personal Narrative Writing at the Start of the Year
How do you build a community of writers at the start of the year who can trust each other with their stories? And how can you do that in a hybrid or distance learning model?
Taking a Little Dip Back into Tried and True Teaching: Simple Ways to Embrace the Writing Conference During Virtual Learning
When the world of education suddenly shifted, so did our teaching practices. Some of us might be ready to start bringing back some of the teaching structures we replied on in the classroom. This will offer some quick practical ways we might bring back parts of the traditional writing conference during virtual learning.
Recently, researcher and professor John Hattie released a paper regarding his research-based perspectives on what truly matters for education (and what does not) during this time of global pandemic. Thus, when I ran across his latest thinking, I became eager to share some of it with you here…
“Did he read it yet?” Anxiously, I stared into my mother’s eyes as she stepped inside the house, closing the front door behind her. After a day of teaching elementary … Continue Reading Honoring Student Voice: Teaching Writing With a Social Justice Lens
Persuasive speech writing is a powerful way to show students their voices matter, to use the mandated curriculum as that springboard for thinking critically. But before my students begin to write speeches, there is work to be done.
Today I continue our conversation with mentor texts when teaching writing through a social justice lens. Empathy is the first step toward building understandings beyond ourselves. It takes imagination and compassion.
As we think about our implicit biases, maybe the most important thing is that we increase our awareness and act from a place of humility and reflection– with a willingness to take a look at parts of our belief systems and behaviors that are uncomfortable, at best. When we know better, we do better. And isn’t that the goal?
For many middle school teachers, planning and teaching small groups in writing workshop feels a little like the Rubik’s Cube; like this famous puzzle, there is a sense that small groups are doable (somehow, maybe?), yet the orchestration of all the many parts can make them feel overwhelming and perhaps even insurmountable. If you feel this way, know that you are not alone.