Results
Humor Writing with Teens

I love seeing funny people perform. I regularly watch Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show, Inside Amy Schumer, and Saturday Night Live. Although it takes a talented performer to get...

My Five Objectives for the Start of the School Year

As a high school teacher with a short 42-minute period in which to teach and a 1,000-page textbook supplied by the district, it’s hard not to feel the pressure to...

Celebrating and Nudging: First-Grade Writing Conference

Bitsy Parks takes time to celebrate first grader Colson's finished writing, even as she nudges him to try a technique shared in the day's minilesson.  

Joy

The minilesson ended, and 23 first-grade writers launched into their stories—a flurry of paper and possibilities—as one sat paralyzed on his carpet square. Shoulders hunched, face flushed, head resting heavily...

Digital Revision: Conferring with Aidan

Gigi McAllister helps fourth grader Aidan revise his writing on the computer to flesh out character development.

First Grade Guided Writing Group: Goldilocks and the Three Writers

Katie DiCesare leads a guided writing group in her first-grade classroom. Click here to download the workshop guide. COMMON CORE CONNECTIONS: L.1.4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and...

Creating an On-Demand Writing Checklist

At the start and end of each writing unit, we use on-demand writing to assess what our students already know about a particular genre. This practice is one that we’ve...

Expert Students

“You have this way of buzzing around the room and sprinkling what each student needs right over them,” my administrator once told me in an evaluation conference. It was supposed...

Literary Analysis: Tone and Scholarly Writing

Nadia was a social being. I would teasingly reproach her by saying, “Wherever Nadia is, talking is happening,” and it was invariably true. So it was only natural that her...

Brainstorming Writing Topics with Drew

Katherine Sokolowski confers with Drew about writing at home, brainstorming possible topics. In the process she shows how much she knows about Drew's life outside of school.

Using If I Stay to Model Literary Analysis

It was nearing the end of the school year, and I was asking my eighth-grade students to pour all of their energy into scholarly literary analysis essays. So it's no...

Building Relationships with Authors

The whole concept of mentorship is based on people and the learning relationships between them, so the only authentic way to approach the idea of mentorship with children is to...

First-Grade Minilesson: Reading Like Writers

Bitsy Parks teaches her first graders early in the year how to read like writers, highlighting examples from favorite mentor texts.  

Hosting Reading and Writing Events

“Is it true that we get a copy of the new Diary of a Wimpy Kid book next year?” an incoming fourth grader askd on step-up day. He was referring...

Minilesson: Writing a Mentor Text

In this minilesson, Gigi McAllister uses her own writing as a model for adding character traits to a draft.  

Get in the Pool: Teachers Who Write

I always wanted to be a writer. As a little girl, I kept notebooks and folders filled with loose-leaf pages of my latest novel. I wrote a lot of haunted-house...

Teachers Who Write

At a recent roundtable presentation, the facilitator asked us to think about our core beliefs when it comes to literacy, teaching, and learning. Although I agreed that everything I was...

The Riskiest Writing

Being a writer means taking risks. Nothing feels riskier than writing live in front of your students, yet no other writing model is more valuable. Let’s step back for a...

Literacy Routines for Applying See-Think-Wonder

What do you see? What do you think about that? What does it make you wonder? Debbie, Paula, and Sylvia are doing a book study with Making Thinking Visible: How...

Teaching Students to Start at the Right Place

I read a lot of student writing. Somehow, no matter how many years students have heard about small moments, they fall into the trap of making stories longer by making...

The Ins and Outs of Using a Jot Lot

We’ve often talked with colleagues about how reading feels much more challenging to teach than writing: It’s so hard to know what’s going on in their heads as they read....