Category Archive: challenges

Who Is Up For A Challenge? A Guest Blog Post By Michelle Haseltine

by

How do I manage with thirty to forty students blogging? I blog too. That’s always made it more meaningful for my students.

Lights, Camera, Action! 3 Tips for Creating Maximum Effect During a Writing Lesson

by

Walking ourselves through and rehearsing what we will model for young writers so as to create the desired effect(s) can be extremely helpful.  Whatever curriculum we are using, it’s just so important to walk through the big steps of our teaching ahead of time so that we plan for maximum learning impact. But what type of “effects” might be desired?

Not All Writers Are the Same! Ideas for Differentiating in the Writing Workshop (Part 1)

by

Celebrating differences among our writers can sometimes be difficult for teachers of writing. But by expecting and planning for differences, we can set our students on trajectories more matched to who they are as writers. Here are a few ideas…

The Six Week Check-in

by

Many of us are fast approaching the sixth week of school. Many of us consider that the first of countless milestones in our school year. Six weeks in, routines are beginning to solidify,… Continue reading

Making the Most of Pre-Assessments

by

 We spend a week or so sharing stories, and building excitement for writing stories. We hand out notebooks with fanfare, and writers happily personalize them. They brainstorm ideas for stories they could write.… Continue reading

Growing Writers, One Challenge at a Time

by

This year, our class motto has been “Push through the struggle.” Originally a mantra of one student, but quickly became the motto of the community. These are the words used to encourage each other to persevere in all learning tasks. The Slice Of Life Story Challenge was no exception!

Daring To Lift Student Learning- Choice in Writing Tools

by

Teaching well demands we stay current and try new ideas. There isn’t any insurance policy that the newest strategy, book, program, or app will work for all or anyone, but we trust our education and experience, and we do what we know to be best for kids. Brené Brown in Daring Greatly says,

Risk aversion kills innovation~ Berné Brown Daring Greatly
So embrace the mess, the awkwardness, and all the uncertainties rattling in your mind and do what you trust to be best for the students in your classroom.

Writing Workshop is Hard Work

by

Last Thursday, I endeavored to explain writing workshop to parents in my district at Parent University. As I drove home after the presentation, I felt unsettled, like there had been a gap in what the parents were hoping to learn and what I delivered. What would you be sure to include in a presentation to parents on writing workshop?

Thoughts on Teaching Writing to Children with Special Needs

by

As I hold on to my last day of summer I am reminding myself to be optimistic and open when encountering children who have special needs. How will you tackle the challenges of special needs children in your classroom this year?

Writing Mantras for the New School Year

by

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…

Mission Complete

by

I have to be honest, I thought I could do it, but I just didn’t know that I would be able to pull it off.  Thirty days of writing during my busiest month… Continue reading

750 Words Update from NCTE

by

It’s day 20 and I’m still writing my 750 words daily!  One of my fears, with taking on the 750 Words November Challenge, was that I would be unable to write while I… Continue reading

750 Words: Update

by

Today was the fourth day in November that I wrote a piece on 750 Words as part of the November Writing Challenge. What’s motivating me? Well first, the fiction writing I’m doing is… Continue reading

Teach the Writer

by

I wish we could change the world by creating powerful writers forever instead of indifferent writers for school. —Mem Fox I just want to take a deep breath and read those words again.… Continue reading

Excitement is Contagious

by

Last week I overheard several conversations about exercise. It wasn’t the typical kind of “new year exercise” conversation either, they weren’t lamenting about having to do it, nor how sore they are now… Continue reading

Celebrate What You CAN Do!

by

If I were still a classroom teacher, then tomorrow would be my first day back to school (unless I were still teaching in Manhattan, and then I’d be heading back the day after… Continue reading

Online Writer’s Notebook

by

No longer will you see my weekly Memoir Mondays and Slice of Life Story Challenge pieces on this blog. (I haven’t stopped writing… don’t worry!) I’ll now be keeping those stories at 365… Continue reading