academic choice · choice · middle school · process · units of study

Designing Writing Units Where Students Choose the Product

Many of today’s students crave choice, freedom, and the excitement of exploring something new. This year, as you prepare to roll out your writing units, you may also want to reconsider the level of constraints within each unit. How and when might you invite students to choose the product that best fits their personal preference and intended audience?

giveaway · mentor texts · politics · social studies · writing

Behind the Scenes at the White House: A Q&A with Nonfiction Author Katherine L. House

Just in time for Presidents' Day, I chatted with nonfiction author Katherine L. House about her recent book, White House for Kids. Leave a comment on this post for a chance to win a copy of her book.

back to school · community · writers · writing workshop

Visual Writer Introductions

Fostering a nurturing writing community at the beginning of the school year means taking the time to build a community of writers. Here's an artistic way you can have students introduce themselves, and their quirks, to their peers.

independent writing · prompts · tcrwp

Inspiring Independent Writing in a Jam-Packed Curriculum

Kristen Robbins Warren honors her middle school students' independent writing lives by incorporating three literary rhythms (Monday Morning's Muse, Wednesday's Writing Window, and Friday Favorites) into the school week.

charts · foreign language · growth mindset · guest blogger

Anchor Charts in the World Language Classroom? Mais Oui!

Learn how literacy coach Mindi Rench has helped middle school world language teachers to construct charts with their students, which has helped students' writing in French and Spanish.

slice of life · writing

Slicing in the Classroom All Year Long

The week of June 10th was hectic around here.  I had a sleuth of appointments, was doing major revisions to the keynote I'm delivering this Thursday, and was getting ready to visit family in Connecticut.  Therefore, I missed Tara Smith's post about her sixth grade students' final slice of the school year.  All 50 of… Continue reading Slicing in the Classroom All Year Long