More often than not, writing assessment is something we dread Whether it's self-imposed restrictions or in-depth rubrics and checklists that take forever to interpret and use--writing assessment is often something we push to the back of our "to do" list. It simply isn't very glamorous. It isn't very fun. Quick writing assessments seem like a dream, right? Unfortunately, the importance of ... Read the Post
Focused Instruction: Teaching Effective Writing Minilessons
Our world of teaching has changed over the last few years--from virtually teaching to the gap in instruction to seeing more and more issues with focus and behavior. It's time to look at the remaining curriculum, streamline it, and figure out how to get the most "bang" for the delivery method with truly focused instruction. One thing that is becoming clear to me is that short and sweet ... Read the Post
Improving and Combining Sentences: A Gradual Release of Responsibility Writing Lesson
I wanted to share today about a twenty-minute lesson I did that was super effective--and reviewed two key writing skills we worked on earlier this year related to combining sentences. These are: 1. I can combine two sentences into one improved sentence. 2. I can add details to simple sentences to make them more interesting and descriptive. Improving and Combining Sentences to Improve Our ... Read the Post
Tips and Ideas for Teaching Narrative Writing
Today is my day to blog over at Upper Elementary Snapshots! Check out my ideas about teaching leads, reviewing other skills, a quick writing revision idea--and more! Here's a sneak peek at part of it... Stop by if you want to check out what I did with our second narrative writing unit of the year. This is really one of my favorite writing activities because it is SO accessible to ... Read the Post
Grading Writing Made Easy. Really.
Because I know you do not have enough time for grading writing--or do everything else we need to do! My district requires us to use a pretty substantial rubric to go with our required writing assessments--and we are welcome to use it for others. Here's the problem. It's 2 1/2 pages long! Not only that, it makes a LOT of assumptions about what my students should be doing with their ... Read the Post
Narrative Writing Lessons and More: Teaching Dialogue
One thing I really like to do with my literacy instruction is to make sure that I weave reading and writing together whenever possible. This is especially true when choosing narrative writing lessons. I weave the two content areas seamlessly, and I hope this post helps you do the same. This year I chose the phrase, "Read like a writer and write like a reader!" and we are working to dig into what ... Read the Post
Teaching Dialogue and Why It’s So Important!
We are digging into a fun narrative writing unit to complement our historical fiction unit. I know many of you write personal narratives...many write realistic fiction...mysteries--you name it. One of our fun writing projects is to take a scene from one of their historical fiction book club books and rewriting it through the eyes of a different character. It's so much fun to talk about point of ... Read the Post
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