Yesterday Lori Hickman and I launched a poetry unit of study in her kindergarten classroom. Since we wanted to see what they already knew about writing poetry, we decided to … Continue Reading First Attempt at Poetry
I have three gems for you. I. LOVE. These. Books. Love them. Micah Player previously worked for Paul Frank Industries. His illustrations and story are whimsical made me fall in love on … Continue Reading The Book Stack
In one of the kindergarten classrooms I’ve been working in, we’ve been learning: Writers share their opinions. This has been a unit of study inspired by the Common Core State … Continue Reading Opinion Writing in Kindergarten
Mr. Stowlkey and Mr. Smith were the teachers in one of the kindergarten writing workshops I was in today. They are incredible teachers. They are both six. (Normally I don’t … Continue Reading Mr. Stowlkey and Mr. Smith
I’m excited to share this with you. It was one of those times when things just worked out in writing workshop. In one of the third grade classes studying reviews, … Continue Reading Review Mentor Texts
Much of my time this school year has been devoted to studying Common Core Standards, as well as keeping up with the ever-changing discussion about the PARCC assessment. I’ve been … Continue Reading Common Core + Students’ Needs
A few posts ago I shared my evolving thoughts about the writing process. Last week I was able to put my thinking to the test. In third grade, kids were … Continue Reading Writing Process in Action
In honor of Labor Day, I’m writing a little post about the kinds of “labor” I expect to see in writing workshop. Early on in the school year, it’s important … Continue Reading Labor Day
What were your teaching points in today’s minilessons? Here were mine: 4th grade feature article (informational writing) unit: Writers use specific words about the subject when writing informational texts. 4th … Continue Reading Today’s Teaching Points
Last month at MRA, I listened to Jacqueline Woodson speak about her writing process. It wasn’t the first time I heard her speak and I hope it won’t be my … Continue Reading Plotting Short Fiction
I’ve noticed many of my conferences this week have centered around purpose. I’ve found myself asking again and again and agian, “So why are you writing this? Why is it … Continue Reading So What?!?
When I first began coaching, Barb Bean and I worked together. Throughout the year, we were intentional about immersing students in the kind of writing they were making. Often this … Continue Reading Dunk ‘Em!
When Ruth and I present, we always leave time for teachers to turn and talk. Our Monday morning session at KSRA was much smaller than our Sunday afternoon session, which … Continue Reading Answers to a Variety of Workshop-Related Questions
Recently, I taught a minilesson about showing a story. In typical intermediate grade fashion, students were writing stories filled with struggles, but slim on creating a picture in the reader’s … Continue Reading Showing a Story
In narrative writing, it is difficult to shift from telling the story to showing the story. I’ve helped launch a fiction study in a couple of fifth grade classrooms this … Continue Reading Show Don’t Tell
The other day I posted about minilessons being one way to plant a seed of learning. I firmly believe this is a purpose of a minilesson and then through independent … Continue Reading Minilesson Part II
One of the things I’m working on as a writing teacher is keeping minilessons, well, mini. As I’ve focused on this goal, I’ve realized sometimes lessons go long because I’m … Continue Reading Minilessons Plant a Seed
The past few months I’ve been reading several authors’ blogs and I keep coming across the abbreviation W.I.P. Finally I figured out it means Work In Progress. WIP is part … Continue Reading WIP?
Here’s a little Slice of Life from the first student day. As a coach, the first day is one of the days I miss the most about being a classroom … Continue Reading Ruth’s SOLS: First Day Minilesson — What is Writing Workshop?
Slice 1: All morning I waited for Laurie Halse Anderson’s post about the writing challenge for today. Although a little apprehensive about whether this would be worthwhile, I found myself … Continue Reading Ruth’s Slice(s) of Life: A New Minilesson Idea