Best of Blogs: Writing Strategies
- Grades: PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5, 6–8, 9–12
Students not so enthusiastic about developing their writing skills in elementary school will later thank you for your persistence when they are polishing off their college application essay or tightening up their bio before a job interview. To help you in your mission, here are tips and strategies that include incorporating technology as well as ways to keep writing assignments relevant, ideas for showcasing and celebrating developing writers' achievements, and more.
November 20, 2014
Get five great ideas for removing writer's block from your students. From getting them revved up with stadium cheers to sharing their work with the class in an open mic session, you will find (at least!) one idea that will work for each of your budding authors.
October 16, 2014
Start by, "reminding students that text is found all around them . . . as when they’re riding in the car listening to the radio or have their headphones on and their iPod going. The songs they are listening to are really just stories, and the songwriters are authors." Move on to some close reading exercises of popular songs. Then use the printable "Hear," "Think," and "Wonder" worksheets to get the creative juices flowing.
September 18, 2014
Personalizing their writers' notebooks encourages students to take pride in ownership. Here is a step-by-step guide to help make decorating the outside of the notebooks meaningful and to set the stage for the main event: what will eventually go onto the pages within.
April 28, 2014
For emerging writers, the word bubble presents a delightful and inviting way to create dialogue. Find great book titles to start you off, links to downloadable bubble sheets, and creative ideas for modifying assignments to include speech bubbles in your classroom.
March 13, 2014
Bring the world of graphic novels to life in your classroom with the help of Dav Pilkey, Captain Underpants, and free Common Core State Standards-aligned teacher resources that are ready to use.
March 12, 2014
If you have frustrated writers in your class who struggle with how to get started, you will find solutions here. Get great ideas plus free downloadable graphic organizers to help your students generate, organize, and develop their ideas.
February 11, 2014
Everybody loves student writing publishing parties: proud parents, prouder students, and maybe proudest of all, teachers. To plan your own writing celebration, check out these video demonstrations of how middle-school students rock the written word!
January 16, 2014
Common Core State Standards in writing emphasize the importance of students writing for a purpose. Giving students the opportunity to blog allows an audience for their words that extends further than the walls of the classroom. See how incorporating blogging into your classroom gives purpose to your young writers and authenticity to their work.
November 19, 2013
Enjoy this complete unit with 22 step-by-step lessons, examples, photos, anchor charts, printables, and more! Have fun seeing your young authors blossom into quality writers by studying their favorite stories!
October 31, 2013
By using mentor texts in her writers workshop, this teacher models "juicy" leads, character descriptions, dialogue, and more. Get book lists of mentor texts to model different writing traits, and many free downloadable printables including graphic organizers, rubrics, and planners.
May 7, 2012
Kid-appropriate social media outlets are great for engaging students in writing, and one of the most engaging forms of social media is the blog. Learn how to use the power of blogging in your classroom to generate a love for writing in your students.
May 19, 2011
Create excitement and glamor around writing assignments with an “Author’s Chair” where students read from books they completed in earlier writing assignments. And if your school does not hold an Author’s Fair, consider creating one in your own classroom.
May 3, 2011
Make writing relevant by appealing to your students’ passion for a movie or video they’ve seen. Teach persuasive writing by challenging students to first screen a movie and then write a review that will compel fellow students to either see the movie, or not.
August 31, 2010
Don’t think of your interactive whiteboard as a glorified projector — interact with it! And more important, have your students interact with it. Learn great strategies for putting your interactive whiteboard front and center in your writing workshops.
May 5, 2010
In eight well-defined steps, learn how to produce a poetry café in your classroom to showcase student work in the genre. From preparation through performance, Beth guides you through the process that will result in a night parents and poets will long remember.
April 22, 2010
Teaching word choice to young students yields some unexpected rewards. Here are lesson ideas and activities to take your young Yeats and budding Brontës from similes and metaphors through onomatopoeia and alliteration.
October 8, 2009
Write, revise, edit, and proofread — the process of writing can easily intimidate a classroom of kids who find it hard enough to get past “I can’t think of anything to write about!” Here is a lesson plan to take your students from prewriting to publishing.
September 14, 2009
The challenges of teaching writing to students who are English language learners are numerous and, fortunately, so are the tips and tools to help. Take it from a teacher who has been there, done that, and developed writing assignment templates for the taking.