Benefits of Writer’s Notebooks...

Sep 16, 2009 by

Many writers like to keep writer’s notebooks handy so they can jot down “seed” ideas whenever they pop into their heads.  I encourage students to do the same. The writer’s notebook is a staple in my writing classroom, probably our most important writing tool.  It is a place for my students to free write on mostly self-selected topics, a place for them to explore seed ideas which may later be taken to publication.  It is also a place for my students to practice revising their writing using the craft techniques we learn through mentor text mini-lessons. In his book Mechanically Inclined Jeff Anderson (2005) describes the writer’s notebook as a “playground for writing”. He says “I let students have recess on the page, the sweet freedom to romp with thoughts, cavort with commas, and...

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Importance of Read Aloud

Sep 16, 2009 by

A good writing program includes the use of good literature.  Before a child is ever able to independently use specific writing skills and strategies, s/he is able to listen to and identify these qualities in good literature through read- aloud experiences.  Read aloud serves more than just to entertain our students.  It is used to build a strong sense of community which is important in a classroom where children will be asked to take risks in their writing.  It also serves as a model for what good writing looks and sounds like.  By closely examining what good writers do, we and our students can begin to internalize these techniques and employ them in our own writing.   It is important to remember, however, that first and foremost, a book should be read aloud to be...

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