Enlist Students as Partners in Conferring

Conferring is a powerful tool to meet the needs of individual writers, but it often feels like students are passive participants in these conversations. Engaging students as partners in this work helps kids see themselves as authors and grow their writing abilities.


When The “Help Desk” Fails: Rethinking Support for Writers

The Setup: Help Desk, Open for Business It started out like any other writing workshop time. Kids were settling into their work spots, some grabbing keyboards, others tapping away on their iPad screens. There was a certain level of productive noise as students figured out what projects they wanted to work on and how, and… Continue reading When The “Help Desk” Fails: Rethinking Support for Writers

conferences · conferring · Our Favorite Things Blog Series · writing workshop

Top Three Predictable, Beginning of Year Conferences: Our Favorite Things

My favorite conferences are all closely connected to my beliefs about writing instruction. The teaching points in each conference are ideas I want to be front and center for kids as we co-construct the workshop and community we will live and play in over the coming months (at any grade level). 

conferences · conferring · plan · record keeping · writing workshop

Conferring Notes: The Key to Unit Planning

Crafting a system for conferring notes can be a catch-all of sorts, a strategy for ensuring that teammates engage in the highest leverage instructional conversations before the unit begins—even if they haven’t had extended time to unit plan together.

Assessment Strengthens Writers Blog Series · writing workshop

Record Keeping- Why and How: Assessment Strengthens Writers

We teachers keep all kinds of records and notes- attendance records, records of the books our students read, records about math concepts mastered, and spelling words missed. Yet, many of us struggle to figure out the how and why of record keeping in writing workshop. If you don’t believe me, Google “record keeping in writing… Continue reading Record Keeping- Why and How: Assessment Strengthens Writers

communication · paraprofessionals

Working Together to Support All Kids: Getting all the Adults in the Classroom on the Same Page

s a literacy coach, part of my role is to support teachers with how to work together with all the professionals who will come in and out of their reading and writing workshop. Lately, I've been brainstorming with some super smart teachers to figure out how we can get all the grown-ups in a classroom to be more consistent with one another.

conferring · writing workshop

Building a conferring binder

Someday, perhaps I will finally make the break from old-fashioned binder to new fangled conferring app. But, for now, I have two just assembled conferring binders with which to begin a year of exciting work...

writing workshop

What I Learned Today.

This trimester I've been fortunate to be able to continue working at the high school level alongside a ninth grade English teacher.  Although my passion lies in implementing writing workshop throughout all grades, I'm wired to adore adolescents and find it a sweet treat when I get to work with them. Recently we moved from… Continue reading What I Learned Today.

writing workshop

choice in process.

This trimester I have the pleasure of working in a ninth grade language arts class.  The first unit of study has been a deep look into narrative writing.  The challenge has been to write a memoir which reveals something about yourself, including scenes which span time, and include a common factor throughout each scene (ie: … Continue reading choice in process.