Picture books, say English language arts experts, provide excellent opportunities to teach higher-level skills while still providing an engaging experience for older students who might think they don’t like to read.
The (Writing Process) OWL resources will help you with the writing process: pre-writing (invention), developing research questions and outlines, composing thesis statements, and proofreading. While the writing process may be different for each person and for each particular assignment, the resources contained in this section follow the general work flow of pre-writing, organizing, and revising. For resources and examples on specific types of writing assignments, please go to our Common Writing Assignments area...The (Mechanics) OWL resources will help you with sentence level organization and style. This area includes resources on writing issues, such as active and passive voice, parallel sentence structure, parts of speech, and transitions.
Cheryl Frose's insight:
There are also sections on Grammar, Punctuation, Visual Rhetoric...
While most of us may be guilty of showing students an entire movie version after we've finished a book, let’s consider a more powerful option for using this multi-modal text. Instead, provide students the same opportunity to make text-to-text comparisons by revealing movie clips while reading the original text.
Rather than waiting until you’ve read the entire printed text, look to integrate book-to-movie comparisons throughout the literature unit. Occasionally, plan to pause in the reading and watch a movie clip of the same excerpt. Perhaps the movie version contradicts the information revealed in the chapter. Or, maybe you want to analyze how the movie director captured the author’s descriptive language in that passage. Or maybe you want to point out what’s been omitted from the scene in the movie and whether that’s vital or inconsequential.
Last week at the Riding the Wave conference in Gimli, Manitoba someone asked me for suggestions on sites that her students could access to find story prompts. StoryToolz.com was the first thing that came to my mind then. I also suggested Make Beliefs Comix. Those are two of the ten options that are included in my slideshow of suggestions embedded below.
OK, it’s time to stop testing the water with a toe and jump with both feet into project based learning.
Grade 10 have today made the leap with me. A leap of faith? I hope not. Let’s hope it’s more of a giant leap forward.
But enough with the metaphors. Just as I require Grade 10 to document the process, I will do the same. I have been exploring project based learning for a while and have put it into practise in a small way. Now is the time to see how it really works, whilst addressing required learning outcomes and assessing the students effectively in order to write their reports at the end of the semester.
In my classroom I use the 2 Sisters CAFE board to teach the various reading strategies to my students during minilessons for the whole group. The C stands for Comprehension, A for Accuracy, F for Fluency and E for Expanding Vocabulary. These are the main areas that good readers need to be strong in. Each student has a reading goal and strategy that they are working on when I confer with them. An example might be, the student's goal is Comprehension with the Strategy of "back up and reread". After a minilesson, I'll select a student to make a card to put on the CAFE board. So, the workshop structure still holds true: minilesson, conferencing/small group instruction while students work independently, and meet together for another minilesson or to share.
"Write About provides many (and I mean many) images with writing prompts. Students can write their response and do an audio recording of it. Teachers can create virtual classrooms and provide individual written feedback to student writing. Student creations can be shared publicly or just with their classmates. Teachers can change prompts or upload their own photos.
"I think Write About is going to be an exceptional site, in particular for English Language Learners. It combines visual imagery, writing, speaking and listening – not to mention an authentic audience."
As an EdTech enthusiast, I am always looking for potent ways to leverage the power of digitality into my everyday learning. Writing is one of those areas where technology is definitely indispensable. Mistake me not! I am not talking here about using technology in the substitution level of SAMR model even though such a use is also a welcome) rather I am alluding to those techie tools that can take your writing genius to the next level. Those tools that have the power to transform your writing creativity and boost your thinking fluency.
To this end, I am sharing with you a bunch of some interesting web tools and apps that you can use for yourself or with your students to help them with their writing. I learned about these tools from Writer’s Circle which is an excellent website for writing enthusiasts.
Please bear in mind, there is no shortcut to developing a better writing style and technology here is but a facilitator, a means to an end. It all depends on how much dedicated and committed you are to the act of writing and as Stephen King said ”when you sit down to write, write. Don’t do anything else except go to the bathroom, and only do that if it absolutely can not be put off.”
Cheryl Frose's insight:
Includes: OmmWriter, Creativist, Scribophile and Storymeter.
If you own an e-reader you often can only buy e-books from the bookstore that is bundled on your device. Many of the budget e-readers out there don’t even have a bookstore that is accessible by users and many people are left to fend for themselves to load content on it.
Here is a comprehensive free e-book resource catalog online. All of these books are hardware agnostic, which means they are not locked by DRM (Digital Rights Management). All you have to do is simply download a title and load in via the USB cable from your computer to your e-reader. Many of these sites also provide the books in more than one format, so they will work with your Amazon Kindle, Kobo, Barnes and Noble Nook, Sony e-reader and hundreds of others.
I created The Digital Textbook as an alternative to traditional printed textbooks. The Digital Textbook serves another important role: it provides a context for weekly reading and writing instruction, giving teachers the means to develop students’ “textual intelligence” by showing them how to read or write about images, websites, infographics, mixed media texts, or more traditional forms which are also included here. Enjoy!
Once your students understand what voice is, help them tap into it within their own writing. Read aloud picture books that would demonstrate different types of voice and then try these follow-up lessons or writing experiments to hone skills.
Cheryl Frose's insight:
LOVE the "Awwww..." contest for older students. Great idea!
Traditionally we teach students about text features such as the importance of titles, characters’ names, setting, and the opening lines. In the book Notice & Note: Strategies for Close Reading, Kylene Beers and Robert E Probst identify additional text features,signposts, that help students read literary texts with deeper understanding. These signposts represent what students are to do as they read, notice something in the text and then stop to note what it might mean. As students learn to notice these signposts there is an increase in their use of comprehension processes: visualizing, predicting, summarizing, clarifying, questioning, inferring, and making connections.
To begin your workshop time, I start off with a minilesson. This is a short lesson that focuses on a reading, writing or mathematics strategy. We show students how we use the strategy in our writing, reading or math problem solving. We should keep in mind the age of our students, and keep the lessons short and sweet. In a fifth grade classroom, I keep my lessons to around 10 minutes. During my minilessons, I have the students do a turn and talk with a partner. Also, I have the students meet in a particular place in the classroom rather than having them sit at their desks. For reading workshop I'll usually teach 2 minilessons, whereas in writing I'll teach one minilesson.
Cheryl Frose's insight:
"Workshop" "Cafe" "Daily 5" These are all similar. This blog post describes well the process for older students.
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