The Closet Project: Awakening Possibilities With Authentic Writing

If you’ve read any of my previous posts, you know that I am a big advocate of creating authentic writing opportunities for students without losing the rigor of academic assignments.  This is especially important for students who struggle with writing; real scenarios can give them the push they need to become motivated and invested in […]

Genius Hour + Writing Workshop: This Is How We Blog It

I’m spending the next few posts sharing how I’m using Genius Hour to help kids follow their passions to deeper research, learning, and, of course, writing! You can see past posts here:  Introduction + Context  Finding, Developing, and Pitching Ideas Beyond conferring with students, blogging is the only formal accountability system I am using in […]

Conferring With Writers of ALL Levels: A Dissection of 3 Essential Differences

Paige’s post today reminds us that our very best teaching with one group of students isn’t our best teaching with a different group — we must constantly bend our teaching to meet the needs of the students in front of us.  Many of us cringe at the leveling of students and especially at the titles […]

Assessing Writing Workshop: FAQ

Gentle readers, when we were last together, I shared some ideas for assessing the spirit of workshop with an emphasis on assessing both process and product without looking for perfection. Instead, in writing workshop, we look for growth. When we consider assessment separate from grading (something too personal, too school-by-school to really make broad recommendations […]

FAQ: Encouraging Talk in Writing Workshop

Last time, I encouraged you to have LOUD, boisterous writing workshops full of writerly talk between writers and between writers and teachers. Our confident writers benefit from identifying sounding boards in the classroom; our insecure writers can often do more in their speech than they can through their written language, so intentional classroom talk time […]