Writing Teacher Shannon Carey is teaching writing this year with an edge. Using the idea of "writing as resistance" she's helping kids find their voice on hard, tough topics and daring them to write great things. Read this blog post for ideas and to see some cool things you can do to challenge great writing.
If you're looking for free resources for Science,English,Math,and Social Studies to add some interest during December, this page from Discover;y has lots of great things separated by grade level including lesson plans and "learning adventures."
Jen Roberts gives tips on how to add voice comments to Google Docs. If you're writing in Google Docs, this is a great technique as voice always gives you a closer connection, particularly for struggling readers. They can also hear your voice and know the intent of your words.
I"ve been hearing a lot of great things from teachers about Book creator as a new way they have students create reports. Called, Book Creator, children can create pages, send them to their teachers and then the teacher can put them together further.
I think every literature teacher should participate in National Novel Writing month in November. It is a great free program that is gamified and electrified by students writing together. Sign up now and plan this into your writing curriculum. You set the goals for your student writing.
The Florida Center for Reading Research has created an incredibly useful set of downloadable activities aligned to common core standards for fourth and fifth grade students. If you're teaching reading, you'll want to refer to this and dowlnoad some of these PDF's.
Many elementary teachers I know talk about how much they love popplet. Here's a blog post about how teachers are using Popplet to teach English in their classrooms. Lots of ideas.
A nice list of free ebooks from Open Culture.
A free plagiarism tracker that is free. Students and teachers can use this site and have exposure to this sort of service even if they can't afford a pay-for service.
Using a TED.com video in a Common Core aligned writing assignment as students learn about speech patterns with the purpose of driving a TED-like conference at the school.
For writers, this excellent article points out great ways to reduce wordiness.
An excellent list of authors and interesting people that would interest authors (and many teachers.) Each list is curated and updated by the person who creates the list, so follow those you'd like to use.
The National Writing Project (NWP) has a community open to anyone who is interested in writing. If you teach writing, you should consider joining this community. They also have a "Twibe" (for sharing tweets) that you can use to disseminate tweets on the topic of writing. They've always been on the forefront of writing and research. Great organization and some great conversations about common core as well.
"A wiki is a forum in which students can collaborate, share and contribute content, and peer review each others work. For example, the students in Mrs. Daly’s (White Rock), Mrs. Young’s, (Stanlick) and Mrs. McLoughlin’s (Stanlick) grade 5 classes have been working with grade 5 classes in Buckingham County, Virginia on a shared wiki. Each student was paired with a student in Virginia who is at or near their writing level. We created a wiki for the project and a page within that wiki for each student.
The goal of this collaborative project was to provide an authentic opportunity for students to develop their writing skills. Each student was responsible for authoring a writing piece based on a common writing prompt. After the students added their written work to their page they were responsible for peer editing the work of their partner. The students followed a common template for peer review that was shared with all six teachers involved. The students provided the feedback
to their partners in Virginia through the discussion feature that is available on each of their pages.
This project has been a success. The students were provided with the opportunity to write for an audience. They enjoyed learning about their partners in Virginia. It was a great opportunity to experience writing from their peers in other states. The opportunity to send and receive feedback provided an opportunity for reflection regarding their writing. The student’s in Mrs. Young’s class and their partner class in Virginia will be continuing this project. They are in the process of organizing a wiki in which each pairing of students will co-author a single story."
This is a great example of collaborative writing in the elementary classroom. These teachers are using peer review to cover first drafts.
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