Smokey Bear Persuasion and Wildfire Prevention Messaging

Recently, my student Daphne described taking a hike last month, as the Bobcat Fire burned 50 miles away within the Angeles National Forest.  As she made her way down the hiking trail, she encountered a small lizard covered in ash, demonstrating just how far the smoke and ash had traveled.  One of the largest fires […]

Diagnostic Writing: The Springboard for Relearning, Reflecting, and Revising

Earlier this month, the Moving Writers Team collaborated on a post titled “12 Writing Experiences for Processing the Election.” Within the post, I shared an idea where writers use the following prompt to build an argument surrounding the concept of compulsory voting. With my beat this school year being about revision, I saw this post […]

What Comes After Mentor Texts? Defining Each Writer’s Signature Style

My 8th graders are just starting to embark upon their high school application journey. In terms of writing, this means short answer application questions and longer essays in admissions tests. You know the kind. The kind that lure students into giving vague, voiceless answers to questions like, “What inspires you about school?” and “Give three […]

12 Writing Experiences for Processing the Election

If our feelings as we approach the election are complicated and anxiety-ridden, then certainly our thoughts and feelings will be equally so in the days and weeks that follow this particular election. If this is true for us, it’s certainly true for our students. The team has been working this week (at Hattie’s inspiration!) to […]

Nature Poetry and Survival Instincts: Floating with the Vampire Squid

2020 has provided unique challenges to the effort to close the “Nature Gap”: minimal time spent enjoying outdoor play and increased time spent in front of screens has led to greater nature disconnection.  One way I’ve tried to address this gap in the virtual classroom is to use poetry writing as an entry point for […]

Lesson Plans: a New Look at Data and Agency

In my first semester beat, I’m exploring the life-saving power of routines–but not just any routines. I’m talking about routines that make life easier, more efficient, and more familiar–even in the most daunting of times (cough, 2020, cough). I’m talking about routines that allow students to thrive whether you are teaching in person, virtually, hybrid, […]