I was in a fifth grade classroom in February during writing workshop, and a student flagged me down, eager to share her work. Now this is a student who (historically), I have been much more likely to encounter reading on the sly than writing during workshop.
Brevity, choice, and routine matter when you’re trying to encourage a reluctant writer to put words on the page when you’re engaging in remote schooling.
I found myself annotating Enticing Hard-to-Reach Writers as I read in an effort to hold on to all of Ruth’s wisdom about reaching students who are hiding – physically or emotionally – in our classrooms. As a result, I asked Ruth to answer a bunch of my burning questions about her book, which you need to put on your summer reading list!
Not every kid is born with a positive attitude towards writing. Here are six low-stress ways to develop a writer at home (some of which don't even include putting a pen to paper)!
Now I know different. I know that all writers hear that voice. All of us. Here was my message to the 6th graders: All writers have an inner critic. Acknowledge yours. And KEEP WRITING.
Remember a few weeks ago I visited Christy Rush-Levine's classroom? As a reflection for our curriculum director, principal, and school board, we (Andrea Komorowski, 6th grade language arts teacher; Shelley Kunkle, 7th grade language arts teacher; Deb Gaby, corporation reading coach; and me) put together a video. It's long (and you know my rule about… Continue reading Voices Strong Reflection
I'm working on a presentation, "Getting Started with Writing Workshop," for a group of 3rd - 6th grade teachers I'll be working with later this month. I've made a list of non-negotiables I'm going sharing with them. They range from writing is taught daily to kids need time to write to students need to go… Continue reading Working Together to Help Struggling Writers
I love, LOVE, L-O-V-E Ralph Tells A Story (Amazon Children’s Publishing, 2012), which is a story about a boy, Ralph, who has trepidation about writing. (It’s already become a book I suggest to teachers when I speak about mentor texts!) Ralph is that kid in your writing workshop who claims he doesn’t have anything to… Continue reading An Inspiring Mentor Text, an Interview, and a Giveaway
One of the fantastic sessions I attended at NCTE was called "Beyond Classroom Walls: Honoring Voices of Young Readers." It was led by Julie Johnson of Raising Readers and Writers, Katie Keier of Catching Readers, and Cathy Mere of Reflect and Refine. Let me start by saying that all three of these women are the… Continue reading Beyond Classroom Walls
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
Whenever I used to hear the words "Center Time" I immediately thought about early childhood classrooms. However, that notion changed in 2008 when I created a Poetry Station for my fourth graders. The Poetry Station was created for students to use during the "morning work" period of the school day. It was a choice, not… Continue reading (Writing) Center Time for Older Students
I recently read Michael Putnam's article, "Running the Race to Improve Self-Efficacy," in the Winter 2009 Issue of the Kappa Delta Pi Record. Putnam asserts, "I have complete confidence that you too could run a marathon; but it takes a plan, plenty of hard work and dedication, and a belief in yourself. Running the race… Continue reading Self-Efficacy in Writing Workshop