emergent writers · giveaway · katie wood ray · kindergarten

Getting Started With Beginning Writers, A Review and Giveaway

In A Teacher’s Guide to Getting Started With Beginning Writers, Katie Wood Ray and Lisa Cleaveland help us think with our beliefs -- in the decisions we make, in the questions we ask, in our actions, in the language we use, and in how we see children. In everything we do, we send a message, and that message should align with our beliefs.

demonstration · katie wood ray · lesson plans · middle school · minilesson · modeling · Slice of Life Story Challenge · strategies · teacher writing · Teachers who write

Showing Not Telling: Demonstrations Matter

We've all likely taught 'show, don't tell' lessons in our narrative units. But showing not telling can have instructional meaning, as well...

katie wood ray · personal essay · reflective practice · writing workshop

Pausing to Reflect: Personal Essays

My third graders are wrapping up their unit on personal essay. While some have grasped the structure and have articulated reasons and examples to support their argument, others have struggled to understand the concept of an essay. I want to take some time to think about what went right when teaching this unit and where the breakdowns occurred.

aimee buckner · authors · biography · colleen cruz · Day by Day · early childhood · katie wood ray · Lester L. Laminack · LIWP · lucy calkins · primary grades · reflections · shared writing · thankful · writing workshop

In Thanks: Books That Built a Writing Teacher

What are the books that have shaped you as a teacher of writing? Reflecting today, in thanks, for the authors and books that have influenced my life as a teacher.

back to school · challenges · conventions · demonstration · engagement · handwriting · katie wood ray · Lester L. Laminack · mentor texts · parent involvement · personal narrative · writing workshop

Writing Workshop is Hard 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?

authors · guest blogger · katie wood ray · reading-writing connections

GUEST BLOG POST: Growing as Writers through an Author Study

Stella Villalba teaches English as a Second Language at Beechwood Elementary in Columbus, Ohio. Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, she started her career in education teaching ESL in Asuncion, Paraguay. Stella also publishes articles on the topic of teaching ELLs at Choice Literacy and is a teacher consultant for the Columbus Area Writing Project. Stella… Continue reading GUEST BLOG POST: Growing as Writers through an Author Study

guest blogger · katie wood ray · Read Aloud · reading-writing connections

GUEST BLOG POST: Savor a Book: Reading like a Writer

Edited by Ruth: Pssst...today is Mary Helen's birthday! Won't you join me in leaving comments on her blog post about one of her very favorite books? Mary Helen Gensch is currently a literacy coach and Title I interventionist for Pierceton Elementary School in Indiana. Her journey as a writing coach began with the AllWrite!!! Consortium… Continue reading GUEST BLOG POST: Savor a Book: Reading like a Writer

jacqueline woodson · Jane Yolen · katie wood ray · mentoring · penny kittle · writing workshop


One of the common threads running through the All-Write Conference was having mentors. I'm wondering who are your favorite mentors to use in your classroom and to use for your own writing. For me, I enjoy using Jacqueline Woodson and Jane Yolen in classrooms as well as for my own writing. In addition I hope… Continue reading Mentors

katie wood ray · lucy calkins · mentor texts

Using One Book for Many Purposes

When I started teaching I owned a handful of picture and chapter books.  I came armed with this handful and my love for Judy Blume.  I knew I liked to write, but really had no idea how to help a child become a stronger writer.  Over time, with a lot of guidance and professional development,… Continue reading Using One Book for Many Purposes