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AuthorTara Smith

I teach Writing Workshop, Language Arts and Social Studies to sixth graders at a middle school in suburban New Jersey. This blog is my attempt to capture all the "stuff" that goes into my teaching life - the planning, the dreaming, the reading, the preparing, the hoping and (above all) the kids. Please note that the content of this blog is my own. It does not reflect the opinions of my employer.

Creating Classroom Environments: Setting up for the middle school writing workshop.

Teaching writing workshop at the middle school level can be an extraordinarily satisfying experience: middle schoolers are ready and willing to think deeply about issues, they understand more, they want to examine issues about the world and themselves, and writing workshop gives them the perfect opportunity to stretch and grow as individuals and as writers. But …

Our End Of The Year Family Writing Celebration

I teach writing very differently from the way in which I was taught writing. I suspect that many of the parents of my sixth graders feel the same way when their kids come home with stories about mini lessons, mentor texts, and genre studies. “What do all these terms mean anyway?” they must wonder, “and exactly how do they advance my kid’s writing?”.