One of the reasons poetry is so powerful is because of all that can be taught and learned via this genre. Since typically this genre is short it makes it manageable for students to try new strategies and techniques. It is also appealing since it takes less time to write a poem, often drafting, revision,… Continue reading Big Picture Series: Poetry Matters.
March 2009's Voices from the Middle included an article by Georgia Heard entitled "Celestino: A Tribute to the Healing Power of Poetry. " In typical Georgia Heard style, the article is both eloquent and poignant. Early in the article Heard writes, One of the reasons to invite poetry into our lives and into the lives of… Continue reading Big Picture Series: Poetry Matters
"I hate poetry," unfortunately those words were the truth of my existence for many years. They prevented me from becoming an English major, steering me toward science -- give me biology and chemistry, not symbolism and personification. Embarrassingly, I even taught for a year while still hating poetry. I had never learned the point of… Continue reading The Big Picture Series: Poetry Matters.
TBPS Logo for Week of 020109 Originally uploaded by teachergal Here's a recap of all of our "Getting Back to Basics" Posts: SUNDAY: structures & routines MONDAY: minilessons TUESDAY: mentor texts WEDNESDAY: conferring THURSDAY: sharing FRIDAY: assessment SATURDAY: strategy charts There was a lot of discussion around the conferring post, but we'd love to have… Continue reading Recap of Last Week’s Big Picture Series
Memoir: Early Strategy Chart Originally uploaded by teachergal I tend to have a lot of mini-charts for my students' notebooks rather than hanging large ones around the room (these days). However, I thought this one was worthy of some wall space. Essentially, these are the teaching points from the first four collecting minilessons of our… Continue reading Back to Basics: Strategy Charts (Part of TWT’s Big Picture Series)
Assessment. Is there anything basic about it? As I've lamented about what to post on this topic today, I decided to look back and share how I survived assessing writing when I first began teaching according to the Writing Workshop philosophy nearly nine years ago. Here is a golden nugget: Assess writing through different lenses.… Continue reading Back to Basics: Assessment (Part of TWT’s Big Picture Series)
In Mentor Texts: Teaching Writing Through Children’s Literature, K – 6, Lynne R. Dorfman and Rose Cappelli write, “Mentor texts help writers notice things about an author’s work that is not like anything they might have done before, and empower them to try something new” (2007, 3). Many of my fourth and fifth grade students… Continue reading Back to Basics: Mentor Texts (Part of TWT’s Big Picture Series)
Ruth and I talked last week about some of the comments and e-mails we've been getting this week. Many of the comments are from teachers who are feeling torn about test prep, while many more of the e-mails are from teachers who are implementing Writing Workshop for the first time and are looking for assistance.… Continue reading THIS WEEK: Another Big Picture Series
What children take home in their heads and hearts is much more important than what they take home in their hands. – Bev Bos Sometimes we get caught up in having the perfect plan, the perfect lesson, the perfect unit, the perfect curriculum, and our students producing the perfect pieces. This isn’t what really matters.… Continue reading The Big Picture Series: Care Enough.
“Teach the writer, not the writing.” – Lucy Calkins Do you ever feel exasperated by all of the errors you see in your students’ writing? The conference begins and before you know it you’ve given lots of useful advice on how to fix the writing. You look over and notice your student is completely… Continue reading Big Picture Series: Conferring
Some of the quotes/highlights from our posts, which you can locate at any time by typing "Big Picture Series" into the SEARCH BOX on the top right corner of this blog. “So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they’re busy doing things they think are important. This is… Continue reading Recap of T.B.P.S.
This is the final post of The Big Picture Series. (Ruth stated hers was the last, but after I received some mail from her today, I decided we needed to have just one more post in this Series.) I returned home from running errands about 30 minutes ago and found a thick, manila envelope in… Continue reading The Big Picture: Happy Mail!!!