agency · immersion · personal essay

Pre-Unit Immersion: Involving Students in Noticing, Noting, and Naming

Immersion is helpful for strong writers who need less explicit instruction in order to try out new writing concepts as well as for writers who strive to complete their written work. Sometimes seeing a completed piece is exactly what they need in order to kick their executive functioning into gear. 

COVID-19 · digital tools · personal essay · writing workshop

Active Engagement with Pear Deck

Active engagement looks different now than it did pre-COVID-19. One digital tool for active engagement is Pear Deck. Read on to find out how I'm using Pear Deck with my third grade writers!

body paragraphs · Expand the Possibilities of Genres You Teach · expository · literary essay · paragraphing · personal essay · teacher of writing · Teachers who write

Moving Beyond the Five-Paragraph Essay: Expand the Possibilities of the Genres You Teach

Are students constrained when they write five-paragraph essays? If we change our working definition of essay writing, then we can teach beyond the five-paragraph essays we often see in schools.

literary essay · personal essay · persuasive writing · writing workshop

Paper Choices for Opinion and Argument Writing: Reaching Your Writers

Providing options for paper allows all your students to do the same type of writing (opinion, persuasive, or argument) in many different ways. Differentiating the materials makes it possible for all your students to do the work--without having to resort to a formula or fill-in-the-blank worksheet.

elaboration · personal essay · writing workshop

Think More, Say More, Write More: Elaborating with Personal Essay

How do you help writers bridge the gap from paragraph writing to essay writing? What are your favorite strategies for elaboration?

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.

immersion · letter writing · personal essay · persuasive writing · writing workshop

It’s going to be a busy week!

Week of December 1st, 2008 Originally uploaded by teachergal I just finished planning out the upcoming week and wow... there's a lot going on! However, when I realized my kids were publishing and starting a new unit of study this week, I realized I had to create some additional sheets to get them to reflect… Continue reading It’s going to be a busy week!