More than other skills, most caregivers tend to worry about spelling and conventions when it comes to their child’s writing. I get it. Those skills are right there at the tip of the writing iceberg. Those skills are concrete and obvious. Those skills are the ones that they recognize and know how to fix when they sit with their child. So how do we talk to caregivers about spelling and punctuation? Here are three ideas that you may find helpful.
Disclaimer: you’re not going to find the miracle cure for getting students to use conventions in their writing within this post. I don’t have one. And I’ve read a lot, researched a lot, and tried a lot of things. That being said, you may come across some ideas that apply not only to conventions, but also to the writing process as a whole, and maybe even to life. (That might be a stretch…but maybe—)
What areas of independence do you wish writers took on more freely in your workshop?
At a time when thoughts turn to sandy beaches and alarm clock-less days, it takes a very special professional book to make me wish (at least a little) that it was September and I could start implementing all these fabulous, fun and important lessons now! Patterns of Power: Inviting Young Writers into the Conventions of Language is a book that will make you happy to have the opportunity to be a teacher, working with young writers to help them explore, wonder, and apply the conventions they learn. It’s a book that I believe will transform how teachers and students look at conventions
The more we show learners what the work looks like at different levels and the reasons for that level, the better they are able to self-assess, set goals, and improve.
Proper use of conventions and the aesthetics of writing pose unique challenges in an elementary writing workshop. Here are solutions to eight predictable problems you may be facing with your students.
Punctuation is a pesky problem. Third grade students often forget their punctuation, writing an entire story without a single period in sight. As I launched writing workshop this year, I’ve been looking for ways to show my students that punctuation can add voice and meaning to their piece of writing.
Professional writers often reach for professional editors in the writing world. Why not create the opportunity for students to be the professionals?
My time at the New York State English Council (NYSEC) Conference through snapshots!
Check out these quick, easy grammar lessons that will clean up and power up your students’ writing.
How do you find time to put a focus on the littlest pieces of our writing to create big pieces of 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?
Do your on-demand writing samples go into a folder or do they help you plan your next steps?
I don’t have a professional proofreader at my disposal (though I wish I did!). I know spell check isn’t a fool-proof method for getting my writing ready to go out into the world. But now I have Grammarly, a proofreading web application that finds and explains in-depth grammar, spelling, and punctuation mistakes online.
Encouraging kids to make decisions about their writing, rather than blindly following grammar rules helps lifts the level of their thinking, and the level of their writing.
Lynne Dorfman and Diane Dougherty’s new book, Grammar Matters, is for teachers of Kindergarten through 6th grade. It provides lessons as well as grammar references so you can enhance your instruction and get your students excited about learning grammar.
There’s a reason for second and third editions of really great books–a writer’s work is never done, and is certainly never, ever perfect.
It’s late, but I promised to post more about the writing continuum work in fourth grade. Thankfully one of the fourth grade teachers has already documented the early work on her blog. Click… Continue reading
Just a little list of some things that are on my mind about conventions and teaching conventions and using (or not using) conventions. Conventions are important. Learning to use them in Standard English… Continue reading
I took your wise words and put them together in a chart. It’s hanging in my office because I love how it is a reminder of the power of collaboration. It also restores… Continue reading