back to school · challenges · conventions · demonstration · engagement · handwriting · katie wood ray · Lester L. Laminack · mentor texts · parent involvement · personal narrative · writing workshop

Writing Workshop is Hard Work

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?

challenges · struggling writers · writing workshop

Thoughts on Teaching Writing to Children with Special Needs

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?

back to school · challenges · community · hopes and dreams · inspiration · writing workshop

Writing Mantras for the New School Year

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...

challenges · writing

Mission Complete

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 of the year.  (In case you missed my first post on the 750 Words November Challenge I took on you can click… Continue reading Mission Complete

challenges · writing

750 Words Update from NCTE

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 was at NCTE.  For $39 (gulp) one can get unlimited internet access in their hotel room at the Hilton Chicago.  Talk about… Continue reading 750 Words Update from NCTE

challenges · writing

750 Words: Update

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 a huge motivator. I have stories inside me to tell. In fact, I've had some ideas for children's picture books inside my… Continue reading 750 Words: Update

adolescent literacy · big picture · challenges · change · choice · education · inspiration · reflections · reflective practice · writing workshop

Teach the Writer

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. Exactly. "Powerful writers forever instead of indifferent writers for school." Sigh. This is why I'm thankful for writing workshop. It helps us… Continue reading Teach the Writer

challenges · motivation · Slice of Life Story Challenge

Excitement is Contagious

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 that they've started a new routine with the new year. Instead these conversations were upbeat and positive. What is influencing everyone's attitude… Continue reading Excitement is Contagious

challenges · first day

Celebrate What You CAN Do!

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 Labor Day).  Even though I no longer have a classroom of my own, I can still recall how overwhelmed I felt in… Continue reading Celebrate What You CAN Do!

challenges · Write: It's good for you!

Online Writer’s Notebook

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 Memories and Slices of Life, a blog I'll begin writing for tomorrow. Though it's a blog, I will be treating it like… Continue reading Online Writer’s Notebook