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Category: teaching

writing celebration

I believe celebration is the core of a writer. It’s what keeps us going. It’s not just about celebrating big things like products and publication, but about celebrating the ordinary day-in-and-day-out living as a writer. This week I’ve been working on a digital celebration for a kindergarten classroom. The teacher opened her doors to me and let me dabble a little with opinion writing. “Whatever you want to do, go for it,” she said. I accepted the invitation and was amazed at the work our youngest writers did with putting… Read more writing celebration

a conversation about reading (soLs)

This conversation unfolded last night, as I read just one more book with Hannah (age 10), Stephanie (age 8), and Sam (age 6), even though it was past bedtime. (Natalee is our babysitter who stays with the kids every morning for the 75 minutes between when I leave and the bus comes.) Sam: You know Natalee hates to read. Me: I’ve heard her say that. (I’m constantly suggesting books she should read, and encouraging her to find enjoyment as a reader. I do this because I want everyone to love… Read more a conversation about reading (soLs)

story = narrative + informational + opinion

Yesterday I had the privilege to hear James Kofi Annan tell his story. He is a survivor of child slavery. After he escaped, he eventually became a business man. Then he left his promising career in order to fight for freedom for Ghana’s children. He started Challenging Heights as a place to protect and educate children. I am moved by his story. It is one made up of nightmares and eventually overcoming them. It is a story of walking away from prestige and money. James’ story faces the horrors of this world, and… Read more story = narrative + informational + opinion

what happened to my nice-neat writing process?

You know, my writing process is a bit of a mess. It didn’t used to be. There was a point in my life when I could be given an assignment, make a plan, crank it out, reread it, make the deadline, and earn an A. The same is true when I started teaching. I wrote alongside my students, cranking out the assignments, jotting in my notebook, churning satisfactory pieces of writing out in time for deadlines. Writing has traditionally been easy for me. In fact, I would even go as… Read more what happened to my nice-neat writing process?

little things: writing process

If you follow me on Two Writing Teachers as a teacher, you know I’ve been thinking quite a bit about helping young writers find their own personal writing process. The more I write, the more I realize how personal my writing process is. I’m realizing if students can personalize it for themselves as well, then they will become more proficient writers. The flip side of the coin is there are some things that all writers do. This is how the phases of the writing process were developed. All writers collect… Read more little things: writing process