Writing Workshop at Norwood School


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A presentation by Tyffany Mandov to the Norwood School PA, 2013

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Writing Workshop at Norwood School

  1. 1. Best Practice Best Practice: Today’s Standards for Teaching and Learning in America’s Schools by Steven Zemelman, Harvey Daniels, and Arthur Hyde “Virtually all the authoritative voices and documents in every teaching field are calling for schools that are more studentcentered, active, experiential, authentic, democratic, collaborative, rigorous, and challenging.”
  2. 2. Best Practices for 21st Century Learners in Writing Workshop at Norwood: • Student-centered: choice and responsibility in all stages of the writing process • Group work: peer editing with guided instruction and sharing of published work • Creativity: immersion in multiple genres • Problem-solving: brainstorming, revision, content and formatting decisions • Interdisciplinary connections: writing across disciplines • Authentic experiences: Write to be read by different audiences
  3. 3. Goals • • • • • Develop competent, creative, confident writers Foster a love of writing Expect and support student ownership of work Write authentic pieces for an audience Learn and apply grammar and mechanics in context
  4. 4. Writing Workshop • Writing lessons focus on specific skills and/or genres • Student choice = motivation and enthusiasm • Frequent opportunities to write to develop skill • Students write to be read • Publish several original pieces a year
  5. 5. Writing Process • • • • • Brainstorming Drafting Revising Editing Publishing
  6. 6. Kindergarten Word Wall
  7. 7. Kindergarten Teaching Charts
  8. 8. First Grade Teaching Charts
  9. 9. 1st Grade Revision Questions
  10. 10. Mentor Texts
  11. 11. 3rd Grade
  12. 12. 3rd Grade Teaching Chart
  13. 13. 3rd Grade
  14. 14. 3rd Grade
  15. 15. 4th Grade Teaching Chart
  16. 16. 4th Grade Teaching Chart
  17. 17. 4th Grade Teaching Chart
  18. 18. Student Writers • Students are actively involved • Students generate ideas • Students have clear responsibilities • Students have individual conferences with teachers and get feedback from peers • Students have frequent opportunities to write • Students write for an audience
  19. 19. 1st Grade Writing Folder
  20. 20. First Grade Writing Folder
  21. 21. First Grade Writing Tools
  22. 22. Conferencing
  23. 23. Independent Writers
  24. 24. 4th Grade Celebration Day
  25. 25. Write to be Read
  26. 26. Read Like Writers
  27. 27. Make Specific Comments
  28. 28. What Parents Can Expect • • • • • • Exposure to a variety of genres Authentic student writing Struggles and challenges Progress as writers Enthusiasm Developing confidence
  29. 29. What Parents Can Do • Reading helps writers. • Notice good writing in books: strong verbs, vivid description, realistic dialogue, figurative language. Possible conversation starters:  “I notice that…”  “This part makes me picture…”  “I like how that sounds…” • Notice story moments in your everyday life. • Enjoy and celebrate your child’s stories. • Share your own writing!  Talk about your own writing process.
  30. 30. Frequently Asked Questions Question: Are you teaching grammar in writing workshop? Answer: Yes. Grammar is intentionally and specifically taught, and expectations build each year. Grammar and punctuation can be introduced or reinforced during the mini-lesson at the start of writing class. The students are then expected to correctly use the grammar convention in their writing. The grammar taught in the lesson can be added to the student’s editing check-list. Writing workshop emphasizes reinforcing grammar through writing. Worksheets are deemphasized, but not eliminated, in favor of practicing grammar in the context of the students’ writing projects. Question: How much should I help my child edit his/her writing? Answer: Talk to the teacher about what writing conventions and editing strategies your child should consistently use. If appropriate, have your child read his or her writing aloud to find and fix missing words or punctuation. Keep in mind that mistakes are often difficult for children to see in their own writing. Editing and spelling are developing skills. Revision (focus on content) is a separate step from editing.