procedures · routines


As summer takes over, I've realized our routines are shifting with the season. Typically I write for 15 minutes in the morning and again at night. During the summer I write first thing in the morning and usually have more than hour, sometimes stretching into almost three. No matter what time of the year, though,… Continue reading Routines

procedures · reflective practice · routines · writing workshop


Traditionally we think about writing workshop procedures at the beginning of the school year. We set the routines, organize the procedures, and launch writing workshop. I'm thinking, though, around this time of year, it might be a good idea to evaluate procedures. By this point in the school year, the writers in our classrooms have… Continue reading Procedures

drafting · procedures · process · reflective practice · reluctant writers · writing process · writing workshop

Word Count

I've had a daily word count for awhile. I'm not sure exactly when it started, but I think it was while writing Day by Day. However, it was while becoming serious about writing fiction that my word count became as much a part of my day as brushing my teeth. I think this is true… Continue reading Word Count

drafting · notebooks · procedures · process · reflective practice · writing process


If you are a regular reader, you know a lot of my thinking lately has been about writing process, and specifically nudging third grade writers into more traditional drafts. Today's post is a collection of my thoughts about drafting. I hope it is applicable to a range of writers -- not a specific grade level.… Continue reading Drafting

procedures · process · routines · writing process · writing workshop

Sometimes It Gets Messy

Sometimes writing workshop gets a little messy. At least it does for me. I think we are trucking along, working our way through a unit of study, learning as writers, preparing for a celebration and then -- all of a sudden -- it crashes. Sometimes it crashes and burns. And sometimes I just want to… Continue reading Sometimes It Gets Messy

minilesson · procedures · routines

Labor Day

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 to define student and teacher roles in writing workshop. With the holiday, this may make a perfect minilesson in your workshop this week. The teaching… Continue reading Labor Day

community · procedures

Empowering Independence

One of the things I think most about this time of year is how can I empower students to be (more) independent in writing workshop.  What do I mean be independent? This is a crucial vision for us to develop as we head into a new school year. For a moment let's suspend reality. Let's… Continue reading Empowering Independence

notebooks · procedures · routines

How do you make writers feel welcomed?

This time of year thoughts about creating a safe and inviting classroom fill our minds. This is one of  my favorite things to think about. Today I shifted the question slightly and began thinking about writers specifically. How can we make writers feel welcomed? Here are some ideas I'm tossing around. More importantly, I can't… Continue reading How do you make writers feel welcomed?

procedures · routines

Settling in to Write

A procedure I appreciate in many writing workshops is the use of a quiet writing time (Some teachers call in No Walk No Talk. It happens after the minilesson in order to give the writers in the room a chance to settle into their writing. Here are some reasons I like this procedure. It provides… Continue reading Settling in to Write

primary grades · procedures · routines · video · writing workshop

Beginning Procedures

I'm a believer in routine. When writing workshop is predictable everyone is able to work more efficiently. It takes several weeks to build the procedures necessary to create the culture of writing workshop. Over the past two weeks I've collected some footage of routines in primary classrooms. One of the important things about developing routines… Continue reading Beginning Procedures

organization · procedures

Finding Time to Write

Of all the things I've done to become a more proficient teacher of writing, the act of putting words on a page has had the biggest influence on my practice. As I've engaged in being a writer, I've learned the nuances of the craft. Being a teacher who writes influences my instruction more than anything else. However,… Continue reading Finding Time to Write

procedures · routines


My school is putting together pertinent lessons for the first few weeks of school to make launching Reading and Writing Workshop more succinct. So for the past few weeks I've been considering the most important procedures to ensure a solid Writing Workshop. I believe procedures will make or break Writing Workshop. So, I'm wondering, what… Continue reading Procedures