In these days where we are home so much, take your class on a virtual field trip or two and allow them choices of what they will write about! This post includes 6 trips all ready to go with writing menus for each trip. Many thanks to Clare Landrigan and Pernille Ripp who both inspired what I am sharing here with you today.
Passion Projects During COVID-19
During the Teachers College Virtual Teaching Institute a few weeks ago, staff developer Natalie Friday introduced an idea for learning during the current global pandemic: Passion Projects. With schools now closed, several of them for the remainder of the academic year, some students (and teachers!) may feel like they are actually living the movie, "Groundhog Day." So with this gift of time (if we can see our way to interpreting it that way), why not encourage students to pursue a passion they have or would like to grow?
Make Curiosity Your Best Friend
As a new teacher, I sometimes made assumptions about my students that may not have been based in reality. Of course, this is human to do so. We all make assumptions at times. But when it comes to teaching writing, what if we replaced the act of making assumptions with curiosity? What if we worked to make curiosity our best friend in our teaching?
Taking Stock: Moving Forward
As teachers, how might we reflect on our own practice in a way that could make a difference for our students next year? Here are a few lenses for setting some goals...
Rethinking Learning Targets
We all want to support and nurture inspired writers who work independently. So how might we carefully avoid creating uninspiring, teacher-dependent environments for learning? I present a few ideas here...
Never Write About the Same Topic as Your Students–Except Sometimes
The cornerstone of writing workshop is that students get to choose their own topics rather than be assigned a topic by the teacher.
A Few Ways to Empower Writers Using Mentor Texts
It could be said that what sets a writing workshop apart from other approaches to teaching writing is a focus on empowerment. Here are a few ways to empower writers when it comes to mentor texts...
Exposing, Sharing, & Connecting: Helping Writers See Why We Write
When we know the purpose or the why in our work we work intentionally. As teachers, knowing our writers are working with intention allows us to trust the students. With trust, we can step back and allow students to make the decisions about their writing.
Our Favorite “Back-to-School” Posts
Whether you're already back in school or returning in the next two weeks, I've rounded up some of our team's best blog posts that will help you launch & sustain writing workshop in 2018-19.
Write at the Start: No More Morning Worksheets
How can we let writing be part of a "soft start" for students instead of making them complete joyless worksheets? How do your students start the day or class period? Please join the conversation!
Using Digital Tools to Meet the Needs of Developing Writers
When writing with digital tools, students have the opportunity to design and share writing in a variety of ways that not only add a new aesthetic to writing but more importantly they offer teachers the ability to skillfully and intentionally scaffold writing development.
Language to Convey Choice Versus Assignment
There are many things we can't control in the classroom: the amount of time we have, the number of students, the size (and sometimes temperature) of the classroom space. But one thing we can control is the language we use that conveys choice, versus language that conveys assignment.