Friday, July 11, 2014

Writing Instruction: Diggin' Into Next Year Blog Hop

I love to teach writing! This year my block of time dedicated to writing was split up into 2 small chunks of time, and that cannot happen again! Writing instruction time cannot be rushed! 

Writing usually gets integrated into whatever unit we are working on for science, social studies, language arts, or a holiday themed writing assignment  For example when we are doing our fairy tale unit we are answering letters from the Jolly Postman, writing opinion paragraphs about the innocence of  Mr. Big Bad Wolf, and writing fractured fairy tales. My students also do a journal every Monday morning. Monday journal is a free choice write. My students also self edit and peer edit their writing with the help of a editing checklist which they glue into their notebooks.

I also do a writing exercise a couple times a week called "The 10 minute write" where I give students 2 or 3 really silly words and they write a story which must include those silly words. 

The rules with this exercise are:
1.  Students need to include the words on the board. 
2. Students need to write for 10 minutes non stop.

 I do this exercise because it gets students used to writing non stop for a short period of time. This process seems to get them over any writing fears. Spelling does not count, and the words they needed to include are so ridiculous and mismatched that students have no choice but to be creative. (Who wouldn't want to write a story about Frankenstein and a purple booger).  This process enhances student's writing flow, and has seemed to help my students get over fears of public speaking because my students love to read their funny stories out loud and make their friends laugh. You can find out more about the Ten Minute Write by clicking the image below. 

My students also set writing goals and we monitored writing process as part of our teacher student conferences and portfolio work. I just uploaded these goals posters as a freebie to my TPT store Click Here to get this freebie! I laminated the posters and used magnets to hang them on my side white board. I then used wooden clothes pins with each of the student's names to  show who is working on what goal, and attached the clothes pins to the posters. Once a goal is reached the student then begins working on another goal. 

Make sure to check out other great tips and ideas about teaching writing by other terrific bloggers who are participating in the Diggin' Into Next Year Blog Hop! 

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