Saturday, January 25, 2020

The Writing Intervention Toolkit: Grow Your Writers with 72 Lessons!

Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively! Writing is probably the hardest thing to teach.

*science teachers everywhere are rolling their eyes*

But it's true. Every writer is different and they all need special instruction to grow their writing authentically.
 
You feel overwhelmed trying to meet everybody's needs while still managing the class and moving kids forward.

You have to assess writing, figure out strengths and weaknesses, identify the best way to address them - whole group or small group, find the strategy that will be most effective, deliver the lessons, provide the feedback, monitor students' progress, assess more writing, and do it all again.

It's a lot! And it's only one small part of your job, especially if you teach all content areas like I did.
 
Who has time to do all of that from scratch? It's exhausting.

So I created something based on my years of working with students in writing that is especially made for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade teachers who are helping their students grow their narrative writing skills.


 The Narrative Writing Intervention Toolkit is for...
  • the teacher who realizes that the whole group lessons are working for many kids, but not for all of them. 
  • the teacher or specialist who is planning tutoring or Saturday School 
  • the teacher or specialist who is preparing students for a state test in narrative writing
  • the teacher who spends hours looking at student writing without a plan of what to do next.
  • The teacher who is told to "differentiate" and provide "small group instruction" but isn't given the support to get started.
  • the teacher who has so many kids that they're overwhelmed when they have to figure out who needs what.
  • the instructional coach or literacy coach who is supporting teachers who are stuck when it comes to teaching writing
Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!

In this writing intervention resource, I share the tools you need to pinpoint what students need to grow as writers and to give targeted lessons that actually get their brains and pencils moving...instead of staring at a blank page.

As an elementary school teacher, I worked with a lot of students who didn't like to write, and a lot of students who enjoyed writing, but who needed specific teaching to help their writing improve. My colleagues used to ask, "What are you doing?" because my kids became proficient, joyful writers. Well, this is what I was doing!

Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!
 
Later, when I became an instructional coach, I realized exactly how challenging it is for teachers to communicate with students about their writing, and find lessons that actually make a difference in the students' writing.

By using Writer's Workshop practices, the writing process, and building targeted intervention lessons, I've put together one resources that will meet so many needs in your classroom!
  
Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!
The Narrative Writing Intervention Toolkit includes... 
72 intervention lessons that cover each step in the writing process!
  • 12 prewriting lessons
  • 3 planning lessons
  • 12 drafting lessons
  • 26 revising lessons for focus, coherence, adding development, and organization
  • 20 editing for capitalization, punctuation, spelling, and grammar.
You can check out a sample of those lessons here and watch a video of the lesson in action!
Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!

Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!  
Each lesson includes...
  • a "when to use it" statement, so you'll know exactly when to pull out this lesson and what students it will work for
  • the materials you'll need (usually paper, pencils, and sticky notes)
  • simple step-by-step directions on how to deliver the lesson to students






The Guide to the Intervention Strategy Ring
Everything you need to teach writing to kids who are struggling.

For each lesson, there's a sample that shows you what the lesson can look like in action!
 
Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!

If a lesson requires a list of sentence starters, a graphic organizer, or a checklist, that is in the guide, too! Each lesson includes everything you'll need from start to finish, so you don't have to spend hours searching online for the perfect tools for your kids.

Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!
 
The lessons are concise and easy to follow. They include student-friendly language and they'll make lesson planning a breeze.

Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!
The Guide to Writing Intervention
Thirty five pages of writing support for teachers! This guide will help clarify everything you've heard about teaching writing while giving you the tools you need to teach writing with confidence.


Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!

The Guide to Writing Intervention takes you through the process of evaluating student writing with a rubric (included), collecting data and observations on student writing with recording sheets (included), and analyzing those observations to group students for writing intervention using grouping mats (included). 

Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!
There's a lesson planning form that keeps your writing block organized and streamlined, too!

In this guide, you'll also learn...
  • how to teach writing using the writing process
  • how to conduct a writing conference and things you can say to students about their writing
  • how to grow students' writing independence with the gradual release model in writing
  • the difference between intervention, guided writing, and a writing conference
  • tips for using the writing strategy ring
  • 12 tips for making the most of writing lessons so you do less intervention!

   
It's time to stop feeling overwhelmed and have some direction when you plan for writing. With this bank of lessons and student tools, you won't have to plan from scratch any more!
You'll be able to meet your students' needs and grow their writing with every lesson that you teach, instead of feeling like you're spinning your wheels.

Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!

Whether you already have a writing curriculum or not, if you're searching for writing lessons to meet your students' needs online, it's obviously not meeting your needs as a teacher! This resource will. As a teacher myself, I would've used it every single day. How do I know? Because these are the lessons I taught every single day that grew my students' writing!
 
Are you tired of planning lessons that seem to flop?
Are you done with watching your kids' writing stay the same, month after month?
Are you ready to stop struggling and start teaching writing effectively?
Get the toolkit!
 
Are your elementary students struggling in writing? The Writing Intervention Toolkit for Narrative Writing includes 72 lessons that make planning for small groups easy! Review writing with a rubric, plan your intervention strategies, use graphic organizers, and help students in prewriting, planning, drafting, revising, and editing their personal narratives or creative writing. Includes the printables and pictures to help you work with students effectively!

Need to try it out first? This free download includes tools from my Writer's Workshop resources along with two lessons from the Narrative Writing Toolkit - Revision: Find a Place, and Personal Editing Checklists. Get it here!
 
In this free download, you'll get...
  • The Framework of Writer's Workshop
  • Components of Writer's Workshop
  • Minilesson Planner
  • Steps in the Writing Process
  • Guide: Guiding Students Through the Writing Process
  • Think Aloud Sentence Starters
  • Writing Process Folders: directions & printables
  • Conference Log 
  • Personal Editing Checklist
  • Revision Strategy Card: Find a Place
 

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Personal Editing Checklists: Scaffolding Editing for Struggling Writers

Tired of prompting your kids for every single editing skill? Build independence with personal editing checklists with this free lesson idea and video. These checklists are special: they give an action and a visual aid for each step so kids can actually do this on their own! Perfect for an intervention or small group writing lesson. Check out the sample anchor charts for editing, too! There's a free download to help you get started.As a fourth grade teacher, I remember reading a lot of student writing and wondering why they still hadn't grasped the idea of capitalizing the first word in a sentence, or even the word "I".
 
Why were there no periods? Why was it a new idea that they should spell sight words correctly WHEN THEY WERE ON THE WORD WALL?

After I became a coach for K-5 classrooms, I realized that a lot of things were going on to create this issue. One of them is that, when we ask students to edit, we often tell them exactly what to do.
  
Tell me if this sounds familiar: a student brings a piece of writing up to their teacher. The teacher says, "What goes at the end of a sentence?" and points to the end of the sentence. The student says, sheepishly, "A period..." and adds a period right where the teacher is pointing. This continues with capitalizing "I" or first words of sentences, using the word wall, reading for missing words, etc. It's heavily prompted and guided.

Here's the issue with this approach:  
The student never learns to edit on their own.

We have to gradually release the responsibility to the students. If not, they depend on us for their cues forever. Which is why fourth graders are still writing "i love go to my grandmas house"
 
But how do you release responsibility to students without leaving them high and dry? Because if they don't know how to edit, they still won't know how to edit when we ask them to do it on their own!

Here are a few steps to building independence in editing. At the bottom of this post, you can get a free download that includes a printable personal editing checklist for students. Read more to learn how I use them!

Tired of prompting your kids for every single editing skill? Build independence with personal editing checklists with this free lesson idea and video. These checklists are special: they give an action and a visual aid for each step so kids can actually do this on their own! Perfect for an intervention or small group writing lesson. Check out the sample anchor charts for editing, too! There's a free download to help you get started.
 
1. Teach editing in context. 
 
Don't just teach students how to edit passages. It's proven that this kind of editing does not transfer to students' own writing. Instead, we need to model editing our own writing and thinking aloud, and we can even ask students if we can "borrow" their writing to project for the class and edit as well.

Tired of prompting your kids for every single editing skill? Build independence with personal editing checklists with this free lesson idea and video. These checklists are special: they give an action and a visual aid for each step so kids can actually do this on their own! Perfect for an intervention or small group writing lesson. Check out the sample anchor charts for editing, too! There's a free download to help you get started.
2. Good writing makes sense.  
Tired of prompting your kids for every single editing skill? Build independence with personal editing checklists with this free lesson idea and video. These checklists are special: they give an action and a visual aid for each step so kids can actually do this on their own! Perfect for an intervention or small group writing lesson. Check out the sample anchor charts for editing, too! There's a free download to help you get started. 
The conventions of language help the reader understand the message we are trying to convey.
 
If we ask kids to edit their writing in writing time, why wouldn't we ask them to edit their writing throughout the day?
 
It shouldn't be a long, drawn-out process, but students need to know that good writing makes sense. 

This is a chart you can make with students early in the year to help them build the habit of consistently rereading their writing and editing briefly before they consider their writing "done".
 
This can be done in any subject -because kids should be writing all day!
 
3. Build independence.

Once students have learned the basic editing skills, transfer responsibility. Here's the good part: I use personal editing checklists with students who are struggling to gain independence in editing. For those specific students. I identify 3-5 things that, if done consistently, could really change the quality of their writing. In order to build a habit, I create a little checklist on a tent card. When it's time to edit, they pull out the card and get to work.

Tired of prompting your kids for every single editing skill? Build independence with personal editing checklists with this free lesson idea and video. These checklists are special: they give an action and a visual aid for each step so kids can actually do this on their own! Perfect for an intervention or small group writing lesson. Check out the sample anchor charts for editing, too! There's a free download to help you get started.
This was the first Personal editing checklist I ever made. You can see it's well-worn. We used it a lot!
The first few times they do this, we do it together, so they can learn exactly what is expected. Instead of asking "What goes at the end of a sentence?" the card has actionable steps that they can take with a visual cue to help them remember what that sort of editing looks like. Each step is framed in a direction rather than a general skill like "capitalization."

Tired of prompting your kids for every single editing skill? Build independence with personal editing checklists with this free lesson idea and video. These checklists are special: they give an action and a visual aid for each step so kids can actually do this on their own! Perfect for an intervention or small group writing lesson. Check out the sample anchor charts for editing, too! There's a free download to help you get started.

 
These checklists have really supported my struggling writers, and it's a great way to differentiate for those kids who need it! You don't need any specific download or printable to use this strategy - you can make them from a piece of cardstock and a pencil. Learn how  in the video below!

Tired of prompting your kids for every single editing skill? Build independence with personal editing checklists with this free lesson idea and video. These checklists are special: they give an action and a visual aid for each step so kids can actually do this on their own! Perfect for an intervention or small group writing lesson. Check out the sample anchor charts for editing, too! There's a free download to help you get started.

The personal editing checklist strategy is strategy #71: Editing to build habits from the Narrative Writing Intervention Toolkit. You can get the whole resource at TpT and help your struggling writers move from needing constant support to having the tools they need to be independent writers!
 
Check out the step-by-step lesson in this video. After you watch it, scroll down to get the free download with the free checklist, too!
 
 
Need some help to get started? Check out this free download for tools to help you teach writing in 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade!
  • The Framework of Writer's Workshop
  • Components of Writer's Workshop
  • Minilesson Planner
  • Steps in the Writing Process
  • Guide: Guiding Students Through the Writing Process
  • Think Aloud Sentence Starters
  • Writing Process Folders: directions & printables
  • Conference Log 
  • Personal Editing Checklist
  • Revision Strategy Card: Find a Place
 

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Narrative-Writing-Intervention-Toolkit-72-small-group-lessons-4620730?aref=qw1fw9zp

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Why Kids Don't Revise...and What to Do About It *Free download!

If your kids struggle with revision, they are not alone. This post explains three tips you can use to help your 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students understand and actually revise their own writing! A free  download for writer's workshop folders will help your kids understand the writing process, and there's even a free revising checklist! Get started today with this download and step-by-step video instructions!
When your kids revise a piece of writing, what do they do?
 
Do they cross out a few words and replace them with different ones?
 
Do they erase a few words and write them more neatly?

Do they add a period, or maybe even... dare I say it ...an exclamation mark?!

Basically, do they actually have any idea of what they're doing?

They might not. So many times, teaching revision is overwhelming for teachers and it is very unclear to kids. They really have no idea what we want them to do.

If these are your kids, you're in luck. Read on for three things you can do to help them actually revise their writing. Here we go. 

#1. Teach the difference between revision and editing. They're not playing dumb. They honestly don't know. If we've never differentiated between revision and editing for our kids, how would they know the difference? Lots of adults don't know the difference, so it's not exactly intuitive.

Here is an easy way to differentiate between revision and editing.
Revision: making changes that affect the meaning and how the writing affects the reader (basically, revision = improvements, meaning, reader)
Editing: making corrections that help the writing follow the rules (basically, editing = correcting, rules)

I include a sorting activity in the Writer's Workshop Toolkit for grades 3-5 that helps kids distinguish between revising and editing!
 
If your kids struggle with revision, they are not alone. This post explains three tips you can use to help your 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students understand and actually revise their own writing! A free  download for writer's workshop folders will help your kids understand the writing process, and there's even a free revising checklist! Get started today with this download and step-by-step video instructions!

When you have kids write their own pieces, make the writing process visible and kinesthetic.
I use Writing Process Folders to help kids remember what stage of the writing process they're on.
You can get the directions and printables for this at the bottom of this page for free!

If your kids struggle with revision, they are not alone. This post explains three tips you can use to help your 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students understand and actually revise their own writing! A free  download for writer's workshop folders will help your kids understand the writing process, and there's even a free revising checklist! Get started today with this download and step-by-step video instructions!

#2. Model it and use the language.
When you write, you have to model EVERYTHING you want kids to do. That includes revision. If you want kids to revise their writing by adding in details, add in details to your writing. If you want kids to revise their writing by substituting words or ideas, substitute words or ideas in your writing. If you want kids to revise their writing by taking out irrelevant details, take irrelevant details out of your writing.

If the only kinds of revision we've showed kids is how to substitute a general word for a specific word, guess what: that's the only kind of revision they know how to do!

The best model of revision that I found is from Kelly Gallagher. In his book Teaching Adolescent Writers, he talks about four things to do when you revise (this works for little people, too). *affiliate link

Substitute (words, sentences, ideas)
Take out (words, sentences, ideas)
Add in (words, sentences, ideas)
Rearrange (words, sentences, ideas)

Isn't that the best? STAR revision always helped my kids (and it helped me, too).

#3. Tell them what you want.
When we ask kids for too much, they can get overwhelmed and end up doing nothing. Instead, simplify the process!
  1. Choose a few things you want kids to do when they revise.
  2. Put them on a checklist.
  3. Model using it when you revise.
  4. Make them use it when they revise.
Here's a sample of how I did this with the "Find a Place" strategy from my Narrative Writing Intervention Toolkit. It's lesson #46 out of 72 intervention lessons!


Ready for more?

This is even better than an anchor chart. Help your kids brainstorm ideas during prewriting with this easy to use (and fun) activity! It's a strategy that works every time for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students, and it will help your kids generate ideas for their personal narratives so they can move forward in the writing process! Get kids unstuck with this strategy! A how-to video helps get you started!

Want the Find a Place checklist? Get it at the here (along with some other tools for helping you teach the writing process! In this free download, you'll get...
  • The Framework of Writer's Workshop
  • Components of Writer's Workshop
  • Minilesson Planner
  • Steps in the Writing Process
  • Guide: Guiding Students Through the Writing Process
  • Think Aloud Sentence Starters
  • Writing Process Folders: directions & printables
  • Conference Log 
  • Personal Editing Checklist
  • Revision Strategy Card: Find a Place
 

Saturday, January 4, 2020

What to Do When They Don't Write Anything in Upper Elementary


There are tons of strategies to help kids edit and revise in writer's workshop. But what about drafting? When your students are stuck and they refuse to write becuase they don't know what to say, this strategy will help get their pencils and brains moving. The quick sketch has worked for me in upper elementary and in primary grades, too, to help young writers think of what they want to say in their drafts! Don't let kids sit and get stuck in the writing process. Try something different! Free download and video, too!
When my brother was in the fourth grade, he had a sort of writing paralysis. Every time he started to write something, he thought it wasn't good enough.

He didn't think he had enough to say about any topic, so he just sat there.
 
The rest of the class would start writing, and he'd just sit there.

The teacher stood over his desk, demanding, "YOU WILL WRITE SOMETHING!"... and he just sat there.

He was stuck. And beyond being stuck, he was embarrassed.

This isn't how it has to go. And if it goes like this, I can guarantee that kid isn't going to write a thing for you. How do I know? Because my brother didn't write a thing for that teacher.
 
Do I understand her frustration? OH, YES! We've all been there, when we feel like we've done everything we can to help a student and they just refuse to write!

But that approach just didn't work.
 
Sometimes they just need to get their brains into the right headspace to write about their idea and realize they have more to say than they thought. In this video, I share the easiest drafting hack ever - and the part your kids will love the best is that it doesn't start with writing complete sentences on a perfectly blank (and terrifying) page. It starts with a quick sketch.
 
Before you say, "Oh, they'll spend ALL their time drawing and none writing", let me explain. A quick sketch is not a drawing. And it is definitely not a masterpiece. It is quick. And it is sketchy. I used to tell my kids it was a "ten-second sketch", even though it definitely takes a little longer than that.
  
Because if you've got a kid who's staring at a blank page anyway, what have you got to lose? Get that pencil moving and get those ideas flowing with a quick sketch for drafting! Watch the video to learn how. It's easy, fun, and it works.
 
 
 
Need some help to get started? Check out this free download for tools to help you teach writing in 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade!
  • The Framework of Writer's Workshop
  • Components of Writer's Workshop
  • Minilesson Planner
  • Steps in the Writing Process
  • Guide: Guiding Students Through the Writing Process
  • Think Aloud Sentence Starters
  • Writing Process Folders: directions & printables
  • Conference Log 
  • Personal Editing Checklist
  • Revision Strategy Card: Find a Place
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