It's hard for students to get the great ideas they have on their graphic organizers into sentence form in a story. I have tried having students use highlighters and highlight an idea on their graphic organizer once they have put that idea into a sentence. The goal is that all ideas would be highlighted. My students really liked using highlighters. It made them feel very grown up. For students who need help getting started, I've scribed for them for the first sentence or two and then said to the student, "Now you have a go!" When I see a student who is really stuck, I try to engage that student in conversation to identify the source of the problem. When a student says, "I'm thinking," I respect that. Writing is hard work, at least for me, so I want to appreciate that it's challenging for my students too. For a student who is really resistant and oppositional, I have a little laminated card that specifies a certain number of sentences that must be written that day, like four sentences. There are boxes on the card that must be checked off as each sentence is completed.
Sign up today for free teaching ideas, lesson plans, online activities, tips for your classroom, and much more.
Choose your grade range:
See a sample >