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Tools of the Trade — A Guest Blog Post by Vicki Meigs-Kahlenberg

We can’t control what happen next in our news feeds or in the lives of our students. By making intentional time in our curriculum for writing, sharing and publishing, we can equip our students with the most powerful tools we have available to develop and strengthen their voices within our classrooms, and create a confidence within to speak their truths out in the world.

An Invitation to Make Writing That Matters

Teaching writing isn’t easy. We can get lost in all that needs “fixing” in our students’ work, lost in the standards and district curriculum maps, lost in the products we need to hang on a wall for a display. We find our way when our WHY is nearest to our hearts: Why do our students need to write well? How will writing play a role in their lives? How will writing make their lives more meaningful? What matters the most when it comes to teaching young writers?

We Are Writers Here! Starting with What Matters Most

When I think about what I first want my students to know, what matters most to me as a teacher of writing, more than capital letters or topic sentences or punctuation, I want them to believe they have ideas worth sharing and stories worth telling. I want them to know their voice matters and their words can make a difference. I want them to believe they are writers, right now, whatever their reading proficiency, whatever their language background, whatever their home circumstances. WE ARE WRITERS HERE. We all matter, we all belong, we all can and should write.