Course Sample RW3

This sample gives you an understanding of how down-to-earth and teacher-friendly our courses are. There are nine lessons in this valuable course.

Like you, we are teachers who work in today’s classrooms with today’s children. We know you want to courses that will help you deal with day-to-day classroom issues. That’s exactly what we have to offer today’s busy teachers.

Thank you for taking time to review this material. Barbara & Sue

Systematic Activities to Boost Writing Skills

What’s Ahead in this Lesson?

In this lesson, you’ll learn ways to involve children in the process of generating ideas and brainstorming before writing. Then, you’ll work together to turn words and ideas into well-crafted sentences. Writing is a risk-taking activity for children—writing together is a wonderful way to support and nurture young writers. In this lesson, you’ll learn ways to boost confidence in young writers and get the writing going in your classroom.

Introduction

Every teacher has heard the words “I can’t think of anything to write!” This lesson will show you how to teach children how to generate ideas for writing.   Writing together provides an opportunity to model writing and teach skills. It does not produce individual papers for you to correct. Best of all, it teaches children how to think about writing before they pick up their pencils. You and your students write together which is the most effective way to teach the process of writing.

We are Writers!

Writing together is a valuable activity with so many benefits.

  • It bonds the class and provides opportunities for teachers to demonstrate how words and ideas into written sentences and paragraphs.
  • Writing together is a simple three-step activity that teaches children how to approach writing so they can be successful writers.
  • It is an interactive activity with a high level of participation by all students that is perfectly-suited for all grade levels.

How to Write Together with your Class

Step 1:  Gather children together to talk about the topic you plan to write about. The more you and the children talk about the topic, the easier the writing will be. The topic can be a story which children just heard or read. It can be based on class experiences such as special projects, visitors or field trips. The discussion produces a variety of ideas and triggers additional ideas about the topic so the writing is not a struggle. In other words, it’s a lively brainstorming session that “warms up” writers. During the discussion, jot words and phrases on charts or the board. Words are written in large print so they can be read easily. Tell the class you will write many words and ideas during the discussion so they can be used for writing. Remind children that all the words and phrases listed during the discussion do not have to be incorporated into the written work.

Step 2: Now that you have generated words and ideas about the topic, you are ready to write. During writing together activities, you do the actual writing on a large piece of paper or the board. It is important to write large so the words and sentences are easy for everyone to see and read. We recommend using chart paper and bold marking pens for writing. After the discussion, ask children, “How can we put these ideas into sentences we can write?” When a child suggests a sentence, or when you create a sentence, write it on the board first. Then, read it aloud and reread it. You might have students read it aloud in unison. Ask the class for suggestions to make the sentence more interesting. For example:

  • “I’m not sure this is the best word for us to use? Can anyone think of a different word that might work?”
  • “This sentence is very long. Let’s try breaking it into two sentences. How should we do that?”
  • “If we don’t like this sentence, we can just erase it and not use it. We can always think up a different, new sentence that is better.”

After working together to improve sentences on the board, write them on chart paper.

During writing together activities, you and children work together to create sentences that you record. Then, you can read the finished writing aloud and have the class reread it aloud in unison. As you write sentences together, weave in mini-lessons on punctuation, capitalization, contractions, possessives, and other word skills.

Step 3: Read and enjoy rereading writing together activities. Display writing together activities so they can be reread by the class, by reading partners and individual students. Have writing together activities on display during parent meetings and school functions.

The benefits of having your whole class work together on writing activities are enormous. Teachers can:

  • use think-aloud strategies to model how we think and talk before we write
  • show how talking helps us generate ideas for writing
  • demonstrate using words and phrases as jumping off points for writing interesting sentences
  • incorporate mini-lessons on spelling, word skills, grammar, punctuation and capitalization
  • model how sometimes everyone has difficulty coming up with the best words to use and  everyone occasionally gets “stuck” and needs ideas
  • change words and sentences to improve clarity and expression
  • build a climate of trust with students
  • link oral language, writing and reading.

Children learn that:

  • thinking and talking precedes writing
  • it’s a good idea to make a list of ideas before writing sente……

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