In this blog post you will find five mini lesson, in the order I would teach them, for your next informational writing unit. These mini lessons have been created based on standards and using common struggles students face with this type of writing.Read More
It’s that time of year once again. School is back in session, and it’s time to take a new group of students through writing workshop to produce pieces of writing that target essential skills. Check out these ideas to get your students started with writing workshop this year!Read More
Launching is about accomplishing two things: teaching routines and getting students excited to do the work of reading and writing. It’s that simple. In this article you’ll find five mini lesson topics that you can use to accomplish both of these goals.Read More
Looking for meaningful ways to have students practice using new vocabulary words in writing? Check out these 5 unique approaches to engage middle and high school learners. #VocabularyActivities #MiddleSchoolELARead More
Teachers are busy! The last thing they have time for is writing their own lessons, but sometimes it can be really challenging to find the right lesson. In this article you’ll find links to the best places online for writing mini lessons!Read More
Argumentative writing is a cornerstone of writing across content areas. Essentially, all pieces of writing are an argument.Read More
This article is meant for secondary teachers who are on the fence about whether to try reading and writing workshop in their class next year. Below you'll find ten convincing (I hope) reasons why you should definitely give workshop a chance!Read More
Being able to decipher the tone of a piece of writing is crucial to being able to decipher the thematic message of a text. This is absolutely true for analyzing poetry.Read More
Here is my personal definition of a writing chart: any information displayed in your classroom to support students in their endeavors as writers. Charts can be small, medium or big. They can be handwritten or typed. They can be written on whiteboards or paper. I believe charts can even be digital and posted in Google Classroom for at home reference!Read More
Teaching high school students to avoid plagiarism is no easy task. Try these strategies from Reading and Writing Haven to scaffold students' understanding and lead them to success.Read More
It's the "most wonderful time of the year" once again! Every year, the holiday season inspires new movie ideas, and some of these movies go on to become some of the most beloved films of all time with some of the most well-known movie speeches in film history.Read More
Read about three meaningful ways to keep students engaged in your secondary ELA classroom this holiday season. These writing activities will add value to your classroom culture while engaging students and keeping them focused. They're perfect for fast finishers and station activities.Read More
Writing goes all ways: forwards, backwards, sideways, over there, and over here. In fact, the only piece of the writing process that occurs at a set point in time is publishing.Read More
Every writer begins a new writing piece differently. Some dive in and just start writing, others need to talk with someone first, others start with an enticing title and still others need to do some pre-writing.
No matter which method students preferred, they benefit from experiencing a variety of strategies for generating ideas. There are more ways to generate ideas for writing than bubbles and graphic organizers. This article discusses two methods for idea generation that often get overlooked: listing and conversations.Read More
I love allowing students to choose their own issue for this argument essay, but that can be difficult for students who do not immediately know their topic or issue. I have found two techniques that really get students thinking about the issues that may resonate with them prior to their research and drafting stages of writing.
1. The Chart Paper Brainstorm and Gallery Walk
2. The Cube of PerspectiveRead More
Creative writing is the art of constructing original ideas by synthesizing literary elements and techniques to communicate an overarching theme about life. Oftentimes in our English classes, we spend more time on the deconstruction process, analyzing works of art by taking them apart.Read More
1. Trying to plan your entire year of writing instruction based on one student sample.
Several years ago, after summer PD in data driven instruction, I decided to use these back to school writing assessments to build my writing instruction for the year. I sat down the Saturday after these were collected to write my curriculum based on all 160+ writing assignments. My goal was to create specific mini-lessons for each student’s specific needs.Read More
When planning for the beginning of the year, teachers need to choose writing assignments that allow for collection of pre-assessment data while also engaging students and building a positive writing community.Read More