As the temperature drops and the leaves begin to change color, teachers begin preparing for conferences with families. I know for many teachers, this can be stressful (and time consuming), making decisions about what to share in that precious 20-30 minutes that will both inform and reassure caregivers that their child is learning. Here’s an idea that I'm hoping helps all workshop teachers to feel more confident about conference prep.
Sharing Anecdotal Notes To Shift From Mine To Ours: Resetting Our Workshop Practices
How can we build even more self-efficacy with our student writers? A few simple moves can transform your anecdotal notes and empower you
My Conferring Toolkit: Our Favorite Things Blog Series
In this post, I'll share everything that's inside my conferring toolkit for writing workshop, as well as how I organize it all.
Top Three Predictable, Beginning of Year Conferences: Our Favorite Things
My favorite conferences are all closely connected to my beliefs about writing instruction. The teaching points in each conference are ideas I want to be front and center for kids as we co-construct the workshop and community we will live and play in over the coming months (at any grade level).
Conferring Notes: The Key to Unit Planning
Crafting a system for conferring notes can be a catch-all of sorts, a strategy for ensuring that teammates engage in the highest leverage instructional conversations before the unit begins—even if they haven’t had extended time to unit plan together.
How to Name a Transferable Teaching Point in a Writing Conference
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?
Tips for Getting the Most out of a Literacy Conference: Strengthening Professional Learning
Professional conferences are an excellent way to increase your knowledge and can fuel your enthusiasm for teaching. If you're new to attending conferences -- or just want some tips to help you maximize your enjoyment as a conference-goer -- then this post is for you!
Writing Conferences: What to Do When a Writer Doesn’t Say Much?
When conferring with a writer, our big aim is to engage in a meaningful conversation with the student about his or her writing. An individual writing conference is likely the single most effective way for a teacher to help move a writer forward. But many times, even with our best intentions and attempts at "training" students how to converse during a conference, the student will sometimes say something curt, like, "Good." Or, "It's fine." Silence. That's it. That's all they have to say. What to do? Fear not! Conferring Carl suggests six strategies to help teachers address this situation...
Conferring with Writers: Beyond the Fundamentals of Writing Workshop
"How about we read Goodnight, Gorilla?" Raising my eyebrows, I gazed hopefully at my two year-old daughter. "Or maybe we could read The Grouchy Ladybug? You love that one!" "No!" Her brow furrowed, my youngest was emphatic. "That one! That one! Moon!" Using her tiny pointer finger, she pointed to Margaret Wise Brown's… Continue reading Conferring with Writers: Beyond the Fundamentals of Writing Workshop
Changing Tack: Learning from a Writing Conference
It's great to be prepared when we are conferring with our writers. However, being 'prepared' and being 'present' are not the same thing...
On the Pitfalls of Hiding Out
Sometimes in a busy and chaotic schedule, we inadvertently miss attending to some of our students who like to "fly under the radar." Being systematic and intentionally positive can make a big difference for some of our writers.
Conferring with “If… Then… Then… Then…” in Mind
We can all be a little more like my daughter's swim teacher, Coach Annie, and a little less like the camp counselors of my childhood. Here's how.