Down draft. More than a name for our first attempt to put ideas onto the page. It is an action we can choose as part of our writing process.
Some Things to Consider in the Handwriting Vs. Typing Debate
Rather than working to prove that one way–digital composition vs. handwritten writing–is better than the other, we have the power as teachers to recognize the benefits of both and to determine the best time and place for each. Here are some things you may want to consider when making these drafting decisions in your own school setting.
Writing on Students’ Work in Progress: Resetting Our Workshop Practices
I used to write on my students’ writing. NOW I believe if I’m the person writing down what I think a child should write, then I remove lots of that child’s agency.
The Comic Sans Trick
The internet has proved itself useful and has given us the Comic Sans trick. Read on to learn how the font we love to hate can help you cure writer's block.
Listening Bit by Bit
Using video and visuals helped this young third-grader lead his class in a lesson on rehearsal and planning.
Lights, Camera, Action! 3 Tips for Creating Maximum Effect During a Writing Lesson
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?
Red Dot Side, Green Dot Side, Revisited
With very good intentions, we teach kids to do their best to really finish a story before they move on to the next one. However, a little bit of flexibility will go a long way in increasing engagement, volume, and independence in young writers.
When to Pop Out of the Notebook
As much as I LOVE notebooks, even I have to admit there is a time in every writer's process when it is time to pop out of the notebook and onto a laptop or lined paper.
An Eraser-Free Workshop and the Language We Use for Talking About It
When I visit a classroom, one of the first things I often say to kids is, "Today, please don't erase. I want to see ALL the great work you are doing as a writer. When you erase, your work disappears!" Often, this is what kids are accustomed to and they continue working away. But sometimes, kids stare at me as if I've got two heads.
Flash-Drafting Leads to Large-Scale Revision
Flash-drafting helps get thoughts down on the page quickly so writers are open to large-scale revisions.
Using the Cut-and-Tape Method to Draft
As a district, we have experimented with several ways to get students' writing out of the notebooks and into a draft. This is one of those ways.
Best First Draft
When students move from their notebook to draft, I encourage them to write their best first draft. (Click here to see other posts I've written about best first drafts.) Something that I'm always curious about is the way conventions come into play during all parts of the writing process. As I've been teaching kids to… Continue reading Best First Draft