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Best of Blogs: Writing Strategies

By Scholastic.com Editors on June 22, 2015
  • 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.



Strategies and Tips for Reluctant Writers

Kriscia Cabral

November 20, 2014
Grades PreK8

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.

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Use Popular Music to Improve Reading and Inspire Writing

Genia Connell

October 16, 2014
Grades 1–8

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.

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Setting Up Writer's Notebooks, Part 1

Kriscia Cabral

September 18, 2014
Grades PreK–5

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.

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Harnessing the Magic of the Word Bubble

Brian Smith

April 28, 2014
Grades K8

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.

Read more >



Happy and Engaged Writers: Graphic Novels and Underpants

Meghan Everette

March 13, 2014
Grades 1–8

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.

Read more >




Graphic Organizers for Personal Narratives

Genia Connell

March 12, 2014
Grades 1–8

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.

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Student-Published Writing Celebration Video

Rhonda Stewart

February 11, 2014
Grades 3–8

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!

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Common Core Writing Through Blogging

Kriscia Cabral

January 16, 2014
Grades PreK12

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.

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Printable Lesson Plans to Engage Young Writers

Erin Klein

November 19, 2013
Grades 1–8

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!

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Using Mentor Texts to Empower Student Authors

Alycia Zimmerman

October 31, 2013
Grades 18

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.

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Summer Writing Through Blogging

Angela Bunyi

May 7, 2012
Grades K5

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.

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Celebrate Writing and Young Authors!

Nancy Jang

May 19, 2011
Grades 15

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.

Read more >



Encourage Persuasive Writing With Movie Reviews and More!

Danielle Mahoney

May 3, 2011
Grades 25

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.

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Engaging Students in Reading and Writing With Interactive Whiteboards

Mary Blow

August 31, 2010
Grades 68

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.

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Open a Poetry Café to Celebrate Student Writing!

Beth Newingham

May 5, 2010
Grades 35

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.

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Unwrapping the 6 Traits With Primary Writers: Word Choice

Megan Power

April 22, 2010
Grades PreKK

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.

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Process Writing Basics for Primary Grades

Eric Antuna

October 8, 2009
Grades 35

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.

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Essay Writing With English Language Learners and Special Populations

Justin Lim

September 14, 2009
Grades 612

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.

Read more >

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