In this Teaching Tip I provide a link to a short YouTube video I created. The video features two effective strategies that help children become “unstuck” while they are writing. The first of these strategies is a familiar one, while the second is less well-known and a bit more novel. Try these ideas in class with your students or at home with your children.
In this Teaching Tip I provide a link to a short YouTube video. The video features a method of editing that I have used with my students over the past several years. This strategy breaks the complex task of editing into a series of smaller, more manageable steps. Kids will need a four-color pen in order to use this approach. I have found that the strategy explained in the video not only increases students’ proficiency with editing but also builds enthusiasm and motivation for the activity. Give this idea a try in class with your students or at home with your children.
 

In this Teaching Tip I provide a link to a short YouTube video. The video features a warm-up routine that I use with my students at the beginning of our daily Writing Workshop period. The routine has become an important class ritual, and it prepares children’s hands and minds for a productive session of writing. I first learned of this routine from Debra Em Wilson. For more information about Debra’s work, please visit www.schoolmoves.com. Give this routine a try in class with your students or at home with your children.
The Teaching Tips will focus on the topic of Writing Workshop for the next four weeks.

Week 1: Peer Revising
Week 2: The Writing Workshop Warm-up
Week 3: Four-Color Editing
Week 4: Written Reflections

Written Reflections

During a typical school day we are often so busy trying to help our students learn knowledge and skills that it can be difficult to find the time to have everyone reflect on that learning.

Such metacognitive endeavors, however, are incredibly valuable, and I try to incorporate these activities into the curriculum as frequently as possible.  Sometimes I ask my students to reflect orally while other times I want them to reflect in writing.

The Teaching Tips will focus on the topic of Writing Workshop for the next four weeks.

Week 1: Peer Revising
Week 2: The Writing Workshop Warm-up
Week 3: Four-Color Editing
Week 4: Written Reflections

Four-Color Editing

Editing is typically one of the most difficult stages of the writing process for students because it requires so much attention to detail.  For many children the task can be downright overwhelming simply because they are asked to look for so many different types of mistakes at the same time, i.e., capitalization, punctuation, paragraphing, dialogue, and spelling.

A few years ago I came up with a new approach that breaks down the complex task of editing into smaller, more manageable steps.  Since that time my students have become more willing, more enthusiastic, more successful editors of their own writing.  I call my approach “Four-Color Editing.”

The Teaching Tips will focus on the topic of Writing Workshop for the next four weeks.

Week 1: Peer Revising
Week 2: The Writing Workshop Warm-up
Week 3: Four-Color Editing
Week 4: Written Reflections

The Writing Workshop Warm-up

Friday, 13 January 2012 21:50

Learning How to Learn (An Introduction)

New "Learning How to Learn" Video:

For the next month or two, my weekly blog series will be a weekly video series, and I will be featuring new instructional videos on YouTube. Including this week's video, I have seven videos posted on the site. This week's new video features a “Learning How to Learn” Workshop I hosted for my students and their families on October 26, 2011. About two-thirds of my students attended this hour-long, after-school workshop, and I followed up with the families of the remaining children at a later time. Though I try to create rich, authentic, contextual learning experiences for my students on a daily basis, there are still times when they need to learn how to study and remember discrete pieces of information independently, especially as they progress through the upper elementary grades and into middle school and high school.

Published in Blog
Friday, 06 January 2012 21:50

Introducing My New Weekly Video Series

Introducing My New Weekly Video Series:

For the next month or two, my weekly blog series will be a weekly video series, and I will be featuring new instructional videos on YouTube. Currently, I have six videos posted on the site. The first video features two former students demonstrating the important role that revising plays in the writing process. The next four videos are part of my “Rock Your Students’ World” series and feature students demonstrating a variety of movement activities that help children learn academic content. The sixth video is the one I am debuting with this post.  In this video I share a powerful way for teachers to create a favorable first impression with students and their families at the beginning of each school year.

Click here to see my YouTube page that contains the six videos.

Published in Blog