Only about 1 out of 4 students in grades 4, 8, and 12 write at or above the “proficient” level
About 4 out of 5 in the above grades write at or above the “basic” level
Only 1 out of 100 writes at an “advanced” level
Problems with Writing continued…
According to Dudley Barlow, writing is time-consuming for both the student and the teacher. This is one reason it is rarely done in its entirety.
Solutions to the Problem
Dudley Barlow states that we need a “Writing Revolution”, or a new educational way to help teachers, professors, and administrators encourage students to write.
Double the amount of time that students write.
Include journal writing in your daily routine.
Solutions to the Problem continued…
Encourage more writing during the school day in curriculum areas not traditionally associated with writing.
Writes notes to your child and ask for a written response.
Expect complete sentences.
Do not focus on handwriting, until all thoughts are on paper.
How do we help students write better paragraphs without actually doing it for them?
Help students develop ideas as they write and then reflect back on that process
Use the writing throughout a lesson or unit, rather than at the end of a lesson. The writing will then be a tool to develop understanding.
Make the paragraph a main unit for reflection. (Bakalis, Maria)
Websites about Writing.
The first website is called Brainpop. Brainpop is a website that has a collection of short animated videos that can be used to introduce, review, or conclude a unit of study.
http://www. brainpop .com/
Websites about Writing continued…
This website contains power writing tips for writing paragraphs. There is also power transition words that strengthen paragraphs.
http://bonny- kate - es . knox .k12tn.net/ cavewebpage / prgrph .html
Types of tests/evaluations that can be used.
Assess the child before any instruction is given by giving that child a story starter to complete.
Use the LEAP writing checklist to assess the writing sample.
Based on the results from the checklist structure activities for that child to focus on, which will strengthen his/her weaknesses, yet still allow him/her to strengthen his/her strengths.
This can be administered by the teacher. Checklist can be found at the Louisiana State Department of Education website.
Accommodations and Modifications
Allow students to use computer or some type of technology for writing. This will allow students to focus more on writing than spelling, grammar, penmanship, etc.
Allow students to use dictionary and thesaurus.
Use story starters if child is having difficulties beginning their story.
Use a visual showing the parts of a well written paragraph.
Activities for Writing a Paragraph
The five rules to journal writing, which will make this a priority for both teachers and students are:
Put it in your lesson plan
Write first, solve problems (attendance, homework) later
Write with the students. Practice what you preach.
Write like the students. Model frustration and a breakthrough.
Commiserate and celebrate. Celebrate inspiration and completed writings.
The hamburger paragraph format provides a clear structure for writing an organized paragraph.
Students can make a visual with the hamburger parts or can write their sentences on each piece to create their paragraph. You can also stress to the students how important sequencing is to the flow of the paragraph.
This lesson begins with the teacher reading, The Missing Mitten Mystery by Steven Kellogg.
The students then design their own matching pair of mittens.
Share the “lost and found” ads from your local newspaper and discuss what type of information the ads include.
Have students write descriptive paragraphs to serve as “lost and found” ads for one of their mittens.
After the ads are completed, students exchange mittens.
Students will then begin reading their description aloud. The other students holding the missing mittens will determine if they have the mitten being described by the ad.
Information Collected From
http://millennium. fortunecity .com/ donald /368/help/ burgerpara .html