Throughout the conference, I watched, listened, and played with digital tools and all along I thought about our students and how digital tools have the capability to make all students feel successful. I was in awe of the opportunities digital devices bring to our classrooms.
Digital tools add opportunities to our writing, opportunities that can motivate and inspire writers. The reach of digital tools allows writers to receive and give feedback, share beyond their classroom, publish to an authentic audience, and build a writing community. So how do we make sure our writers are ready?
Without a notebook, my great ideas are going unrecorded and, ultimately, forgotten.
Teaching well demands we stay current and try new ideas. There isn’t any insurance policy that the newest strategy, book, program, or app will work for all or anyone, but we trust our education and experience, and we do what we know to be best for kids. Brené Brown in Daring Greatly says,
Risk aversion kills innovation~ Berné Brown Daring Greatly
So embrace the mess, the awkwardness, and all the uncertainties rattling in your mind and do what you trust to be best for the students in your classroom.
If you have not started using writing portfolios with your students yet, give it a try. Start a collection of their work and build in a system of reflection.
One question I am often asked about using technology is, “How do you get started?” The answer is actually a simple one – humbly.
Get started organizing your mentor texts with four digital tools.
We spend lots of time talking about the writing process here at TWT. This post tackles something that has nothing to do with meaning, structure, focus, word choice, elaboration, voice, or conventions. It deals with the physical act of writing, which can be challenging for some children.
Want to help your students focus better during independent writing time? A recent NY Times piece by Daniel J. Levitin may hold the key to making this happen in your classroom.
A recent visit to San Francisco inspired me to think about oral story telling, publishing, an persuasive writing. Here are five things my trip left me thinking about. PLUS, leave a comment on this blog post for a chance to win a copy of a new picture book from Chronicle Books.
We are neck deep in drafting various pieces for our multi genre writing project these days, and I am noticing (and celebrating) two ways in which our workshop has changed, both of which… Continue reading
I had the pleasure of speaking about “Curating and Cultivating a Virtual Community of Writers” with the members of the Chester County Reading Association this afternoon. I talked about the ways blogging, microblogging, other digital technologies allow teacher-writers to interact with each other worldwide.
Make use of Google Hangouts when you need to work with writers outside of writing workshop time. Here are five quick ways to use this FREE technology.
The gradual release of responsibility works for teaching one’s mom how to use a smart phone just as well as it works for teaching writers.
A few years ago I thought I had a brilliant idea. I created a master writer’s notebook since my notebook writing, which I shared with students during writing conferences and in minilessons, was… Continue reading
Two of the sessions I attended at NCTE in Boston helped me think about ways two digital tools could be meaningfully integrated into early childhood and elementary school classrooms to engage young writers. The “Exploring Collaboration of Multimodal Literacies in Early Childhood: Digital Filmmaking, Designing, and Co-Authoring” panel discussed the way digital video cameras could enhance learning, while two of the presenters in “Writing Workshop Is for All Students: Using Visuals, Oral Language, and Digital Tools to Maximize Success and Independence for English Language Learners” suggested the incorporation of digital cameras.
It’s hard to know which note-taking or journaling app is right for you ’til you give a few a try. After using Day One, Noteshelf, and Penultimate, I have a better idea of which one suits me the best.
I’m looking forward to presenting about online writing relationships at this year’s Keystone State Reading Association (KSRA) Conference, which will be held in State College, PA in less than two weeks. Ruth and I… Continue reading
Many parents, guardians, and extended family members cannot leave work to attend writing celebrations. Here are some ideas to bring your next publishing party into the community where you teach OR to make them virtual celebrations.
After reading “Technology and the College Generation,” I’ve come to believe teachers of writing need to craft mini units of study to help kids learn to use e-mail confidently.