“Let me tell you a story…” are some of the first words that make their way out of my mouth and into the imaginations of students who don’t quite know what to think of me at the start of the year. They come in cautious. In a few days, they will come to school carrying far beyond the simple feeling of cautiousness. They will, many of them, bring with them fear, worry, and anxiety. #TWTBlog
Students have inspired us with the craft of story, building themselves into stronger writers each day. What a beautiful way to have students feel so close when they are so far from us.
At the start of April, students around the world began the journey of storytelling, connecting them to each other, teachers, and families in important and meaningful ways. Students are writing during this historic month of April, as we all live history through a global pandemic.
So many stories, so many possibilities for weaving narrative writing into other genres– and so much fun we can have doing it!
Almost every student could use these charts to identify what they were working on, how they were working on it, and whether or not they needed instruction of some sort of help.
Once students can say their beginning, middle, and end, know what their story is really about, and can identify their important parts, they almost always can make a solid plan and feel comfortable beginning to draft. But sometimes it’s hard to get them to this point in the process.
“Show don’t tell,” we say over and over to students but–it’s harder than it sounds, though, maybe for multiple reasons.
I’ve been tinkering with Instagram Stories this summer. I’ve discovered several ways teacher-writers can use them as a tool for living and storytelling.
Here’s a fun strategy you can try to generate writing in your notebook this summer. Come back-to-school time, you can teach your students how to use this strategy if they get stuck.
The students wrapped their writing in an array of wrapping paper, and they left my classroom eager to share their gifts – the gift of words.
“Story is the basic unit of human understanding.” – Drew Dudley, Day One Leadership. We have been learning through story for thousands of years. Our innate fascination for wanting to … Continue Reading Connecting Through Story
Ever since I read this post by Katie Kraushaar, I’ve been thinking about personal narrative and wondering why it is that students, particularly in middle elementary grades and beyond, are sometimes less … Continue Reading Shaking Up Personal Narrative
We spend a week or so sharing stories, and building excitement for writing stories. We hand out notebooks with fanfare, and writers happily personalize them. They brainstorm ideas for stories … Continue Reading Making the Most of Pre-Assessments
I’ve been thinking about why young writers struggle with personal narrative and realistic fiction writing.
When I first opened Nerdy Birdy by Aaron Reynolds, I was not (yet) reading it with the eye of a writer. I was way too smitten with the bird on the front … Continue Reading Nerdy Birdy: A Review & Giveaway
Janiel Wagstaff’s books will help you teach primary writers about the four types of writing in an engaging way. Leave a comment on this post for a chance to win her series of Stella books.
Opening lines should draw readers into the world of a story & involve them from the start.
How, she wondered, could we get them to write more focused narratives? And what types of entries could they make in their writer’s notebooks to help them with this process?
I have an irrational fear of mice. It is bad news. My husband has established a preemptive strike in our basement and garage. He engages in an impossible battle to … Continue Reading Big Realization from a Tiny Mouse
This Moose Belongs to Me and Baby Penguins Everywhere are new books with strong messages that contain craft moves we can teach young writers.