When my PLC revisited our Hot Take writing unit this year, we decided we needed to help students find a balance between voice, style, and evidence.
Lately my son’s favorite activity has been our daily Halloween Walk in which we start at the top of our block and stroll from house to house snapping pictures of all the Halloween decorations we see with his Fisher Price camera. Today we saw spiders and pumpkins and ghosts and skeletons and scarecrows and orange […]
No matter how much we try, none of us can do it all; there simply aren’t enough hours in the classroom. So, whenever possible, I try to double-dip — pulling the learning from one area of our work to another. And that’s exactly my aim in this new column. To feed our students’ book love, […]
Mentor Text: What Static Shock Meant To Me As a Young Black Boy by Jaylen Pearson Writing Techniques: Writing About a Text Applying a Critical Lens Highlighting an Impactful Moment Writing an Introduction Background: My Grade 12 course is tied to a theme based around identity, individuality and independence, which we call The Three Is. […]
When you need to explore the power of diction and syntax with your students, looking at actual editorial revisions made by professional journalists seems like a great place to start!
I love a giant leap. A big swing. I want to tell you that I carefully research, weigh, and plan each and every instructional decision that rolls forth from my desk. But I don’t. More often than not, I don’t think all that much. I come up with a wild “What if?”, jump, and see […]
I do not hide the fact that I am a fan of rock and roll. And, if you’re a Canadian of my age, that means being a fan of The Tragically Hip. That means being a fan of Gord Downie. Gord, as we all call him, in a very Canadian way, like we knew him […]
Each year, my students compose a series of brief writing pieces—each one describing a person, place, or thing. Currently, students are working on their “person” essay—a personal essay inspired by the beautiful mentor text, “The Stranger in the Photo is Me” by Don Murray. The essay is a meditation on memory and identity, and as […]
I thought I was so clever. I thought I had saved myself some time. Survey says…I was wrong!
On weekly visits to the library with my two-year-old son I often find myself browsing the periodicals in the children’s section. From there I can spy my busy toddler as he moves from the play kitchen to the dinosaur section to the puppet show. Recently I found myself drawn to magazines geared for boys and […]