accessibility · agency · Amping up Agency Blog Series · emergent writers · high frequency words · independence · kindergarten · writing folder

Tools and Resources That Support Student Agency in the Kindergarten Writing Workshop: Amping Up Agency Blog Series

You've probably heard a young child say, "I can do it all by myself!" in one breath, and then in the next breath they are asking you for help. As children make sense of the world and learn how to do more things for themselves, they crave structure and support from adults. Providing children with a variety of tools and resources and teaching them how and when to use them, supports students in developing a sense of "big kid-ness" and agency over their own writing.

COVID-19 · independence · independent writing · summer vacation

Reimagine Tools for Summertime Writing

Many of us will be satisfied if kids choose to JUST WRITE this summer. However, for the students who are ready to do more than just write, we can provide them with a nudge to transform tools they’ve leaned on during the school year so they can become updated tools for at-home, independent use this summer.

bulletin boards · classroom environment · COVID-19 · independence · small group · writing workshop

Bringing Virtual Classrooms to Life

Is it possible to duplicate the live, in-person experiences? Of course not, but maybe some of you could feel the authenticity of a high-five or hug I'm sending your way. So let’s think about some ways to bring virtual classrooms to life, maybe thinking of it as duplicating some of the processes of your classroom in a virtual world.

collaboration · COVID-19 · independence · materials · routines

Rethinking Materials, Routines, and Collaboration: What Does Independence and Interdependence Look Like From Home?

Our teaching worlds have been turned upside down. For many of us, every system and structure we’ve had in place for planning, teaching and learning has changed over the past few days. As you find our groove in the new reality, here are some practical suggestions that will help bring the many comforts of your classroom home.

charts · independence · scaffolding charts · strategy charts · teaching tools

The Power of Silent Teachers: Helping Writers Increase Productivity and Build Independence Through Interdependence with Tools in the Classroom

We give our writers a lot of stuff. Their folders are full of charts, worksheets and examples meant to be helpful for independent writing, but are students using these tools to their fullest capacity? Are writers waiting for us to say “get out ___” or “look at ____”? This post will give you some practical ideas for how to help students achieve interdependence and utilize the silent teachers in the classroom to their fullest capacity.

goals · independence · Reaching Your Writers Blog Series · strategies · strategy charts · writing workshop

Entry Points to Build Independence: Reaching Your Writers

Where are the places your writers find themselves stuck? Identifying our writers' sticky spots can help us determine entry points for writers to pull themselves out of being stuck and instead strive!

independence · spelling · stamina · volume

“Just-Keep-Swimming” Spelling Strategies

Just like Dory, in the movie Finding Nemo, young writers can easily lose their way and forget where they were headed, especially if they stop for too long and lose their momentum.

growth mindset · independence · independent writing · Nurturing Independence From the Start Blog Series · writing workshop

A Writer’s Mindset: Nurturing Independence from the Start

Does the mindset of our student writers impact their independence? How does OUR mindset impact their independence as writers?
After a lot of researching, reading, writing, and reflecting I'm sharing some insights and steps toward building a growth mindset in our classroom communities of writers. Join in the conversation!


Approximation vs. Mastery: Nurturing Independence from the Start

As our students write this year, it will be important for us to remember that they are still learners, and as such, they will be approximating. It will be unlikely they will reach mastery. Understanding this can actually improve our teaching...

greenbelt writing · hopes and dreams · independence · independent writing · independent writing projects · informal writing · motivation · publishing · student engagement · Student ownership · writer's notebook · writing workshop

Ten Possible Minutes: Sacred Writing

Every year brings with it new surprises. I was delightfully surprised by just ten minutes this year. Ten minutes made a big difference.

choice · feedback · independence · middle school

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...