This year I started doing Writer's Workshop. I have never done it before and I have never been trained, but I felt like my writing program really needed a kick in the pants. So after reading lots of blogs and hearing recommendations from other teachers, I bought this book.
Well I set up my Writing Center and added lots of items that she suggests. I bought yellow folders for my kids so they all looked the same and matched their yellow coded writing journals. There are lots of choices for paper and I let them use what they like. They also have a personal dictionary if they need to look up a word on their own.
Armed with my new found knowledge I followed her first few lessons to a tee and low and behold my children LOVE to write. Not only do they love to write, they ask me if they can write when they are finished with their other work!!
Can you hear the Hallelujah choir in the background??? What is the secret??? It's the same with so many things kids need....Choice. My kids are free to write about whatever they like during this time. For some this was a shock. They sat there looking at me like I was crazy and wanted me to tell them what to do. They were so used to being given a prompt, that choosing what to write was scary!
I simply turned on my Classical music (Pandora is wonderful), got out my own journal and wrote during my 10 minutes. You could have heard a pin drop as they watched me writing. Well pretty soon everyone was writing, and when I turned off that music there were groans!!
I decided to share that first day and they were so sweet with their compliments and critiques of my story.
From that day on Writing has been one of their favorite things to do. They practically knock each other down when I have sign ups for conferences! And on Thursday when our Part-Time Teacher comes in to publish there is a line up of kids waiting to meet with her.
Our class library is filling up quickly!
Now that my kids have reallly embraced Writer's Workshop, I plan to focus my lessons as the year progresses. We will begin more non-fiction writing this quarter to go along with our Science and to keep up with Common Core.
How is your writing block set up? Do you use Writer's Workshop? I would love to hear your ideas and thoughts.
I will continue to share out some of our fun writing activities throughout the year. Stop back by tomorrow for a fun little treat:)