Thursday, November 28, 2013

Using writing to help with classroom culture. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief.

Using writing to improve middle-grades peer relationships
Former sixth-grade teacher David Rockower shares in this commentary how he used a letter-writing exercise to raise awareness and combat bullying and exclusion among students. Rockower first wrote his own letter to students expressing his concerns about such behavior -- and sharing his own middle-school experiences -- then invited students to write letters to him about their experiences with cliques, bullying and exclusion. "After this writing experience, there was a noticeable lifting of tension," he writes. Education Week Teacher (premium article access compliments of (11/4)Bookmark and Share

Monday, November 18, 2013

November's Lesson from the Harrisons...Enjoy!

Thanks for your patience on November's lesson; we are slowly getting back to normal around here.  And thanks to all our countries' veterans for their service; I appreciated not only their service today but also the fact that I could--with a day away from students--finally upload all the pictures that go with this month's image-packed writing lesson of the month.  Enjoy!

Our Writing Lesson of the Month: Epistolary Narratives & Writer's Notebook Summaries  I used this lesson in two similar-but-different ways with two of my grade levels last month, and I ended up with two different sets of student samples.  My kids really liked creating documents that tell a story (which is what "epistolary" means).  I was just talking to a friend who thinks this would make a fun way to tell a holiday story in honor of the festivities coming up in the next 6 or 7 weeks.  Direct link to lesson:
Our Writer's Notebook Prompt of the Month:  Start & Stop Poems  This is the third November in a row that we are doing a weekly "Start & Stop Poem" for practice with writing details.  This lesson idea comes right from the center-square of our "Writer's Notebook Bingo Cards," which make a great Christmas present for that teacher who is too hard to find gifts for!  :-)  Direct link to this notebook prompt:
In the spirit of my old WritingFix website, I am incorporating more opportunities to publish your students online if you are using any of the lessons/prompts from our website.  If you are using our vocabulary lessons, for example, you can now post your students' own vocabulary words at this posting page at the Ning!

Have a great November & Thanksgiving Holiday.  Look for a new lesson of the month early this December!
Bookmark and Share
--Corbett & Dena Harrison

Visit Writing Lesson of the Month Network at:

Friday, November 1, 2013

First grade students writing novels? Following are some great ideas for all teachers. Courtesy of ASCD SmartBrief!

How to challenge first-graders with a novel-writing competition
Teaching elementary students how to write fiction through the National Novel Writing Month competition motivates struggling writers and helps students develop a better understanding of novels, instructional coach Lily Jones writes in this blog post. Jones explains how she prepared students for fiction writing during the last days in October and streamlined November's NaNoWriMo program for her first-graders. She also provides a link to curricula for K-12 students. Teaching Channel/Tchers' Voice blog (10/29)Bookmark and Share