Individual Writing Conference
The individual writing conference is a powerful teaching tool that moves children toward independence in writing. The writing conference is a time to meet with children one-on-one to celebrate successes and to provide individualized, developmentally appropriate instruction. Learning cannot occur without feedback—the writing conference is a time to provide that feedback.
Providing feedback to emergent writers:
Providing feedback to early/developing writers:
- Read or have the student read the text aloud.
- Comment on the message.
- Show the student what s/he did right.
- Choose 1-2 teaching points to model problem-solving on something “used but confused.”
- If publishing the piece, quickly provide necessary corrections.
- If the piece will not be published, don’t worry about correcting every error—stick to 1-2 teaching points.
- Have the student reread the text.
- Record observations and anecdotal notes.
Questions that can help guide writers:
- How’s it coming so far? What are you working on?
- Can you tell me about your story?
- How can I help you?
- Do you need to change your topic?
- Do you know the topic well enough to write about it?
- What would you like to change?
- Is there more than one story in this piece?
- What are your plans for this piece?
I keep track of my anecdotal notes by recording them in my Assessment Notebook.
In the writing section of the notebook I photocopy one of the following front-to-back forms for each student: