Field Notes #Writeout


Need a boost to your writing class? Want to do some beautiful cross curricular writing or work with your colleagues? This months beat is your guide– 


If only my students were writing in all subject areas..

If only I knew what to do…

If only I had the mentor texts…

All words I have uttered and all real feelings that are valid, which is the main reason the Moving Writers community exists. To give you a place to come and find reprieve from all the searching and be refreshed to try new things. 

For the next two weeks I am hoping that I can direct you to an amazing labor of love that the National Writing Project hosts called #writeout. The project comes from the passion of having students write about nature and STEAM topics. What a place to get your kids writing tomorrow follow below: 

  1. Create a Field Notebook

If you don’t have writer’s notebooks now is a good time to create a notebook or Zine in your class. These notebooks are going to be a place of noticing, wondering and using their 5 senses to describe the world around them for the next two weeks. Here is a link that describes different ways your kids could create a grab and go notebook tomorrow. 

  1. Developing Students Observation Skills 

This is crucial to writing in the subject areas outside of the ELA classroom. Students need to know how to use their 5 senses to connect with their world around them. This also helps with word choice and author’s craft further down the road when students are writing other narrative and informational writing. There are so many scientists that have kept and keep a field notebook. Go outside with your notebooks and do a sit spot and have your students record what they see, smell, feel, notice, wonder… have them describe the colors and the way the light shines. Go back to class and collect some of their descriptions. Have them create a rambling poem with a line from their writing. Here is a past article to get you started if you need a jumping off place.  

  1. Spark their curiosity

There are many awesome lessons and sparks to give your students to help them think about writing about nature. I give my students a new prompt every day and give them 10 minutes to write. At the end of the week students can pick a piece to publish virtually. Here is a link of “sparks” and some of my students work from last year during #writeout:

My hope is that even if you don’t join in the next 2 weeks, this resource will get you chatting with your colleagues and with your students about the importance of writing in all subject areas, and gives you a toolbelt of new sparks to get you through the first semester.

If you want to get further into the #Writeout discussion join the Twitter Chat tonight at 7 pm EST as teachers will share more ideas they are using in their classrooms. Also sign up for the newsletter for any additional resources that will be sent out.

Please reach out with questions, reflections, and connections in the comments below or on Twitter @Mrsablund. Check out my other articles writing out of the ELA classroom.

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