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Inspiring children to write by living like a writer: teaching writing workshop with our notebooks wide-open. Stacey Shubitz Rhode Island Writing Project, Spring 2008 Conference. Overview of Action Research Project Completed at Teachers College, Columbia University. Research Question
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Rhode Island Writing Project, Spring 2008 Conference
If teachers of writing want our students to live like writers, then we must live like writers by writing daily, carrying our notebooks with us, and sharing the pages of our notebooks with our students so they can see we practice what we preach.
A student wrote this entry about part of her summer vacation. It lacked detail. By early May, I had shared many of my entries with her to teach her how to elaborate about a small moment.
My Acrostic Poem: “Providence”
Student’s Acrostic Poem: “Smile”
Slice of Life Stories as daily notebook entries work well for:
Children who think that nothing interesting ever happens to them
Young writers who are trying to get into the habit of writing daily.
This entry was written before the SOLS Challenge began.
Pancakes for Breakfast
When I transferred the pancake mix into an airtight container last month, I forgot to cut out the directions from the side of the box before I threw out the box. Oops!
This morning I made pancakes for the first time since I threw out the directions. I started thinking ‘one cup of mix + one cup of milk + one cup of water = delicious whole wheat pancakes.’ Well, once I got everything into the mixing bowl, I quickly realized that was not the recipe. Therefore, I started throwing in handfuls of mix to thicken up the batter. Then I put in the chocolate chips in hopes that would thicken it up (it didn’t). Finally, I cracked and egg and added a splash of canola oil, which made the batter thicker.
I began placing scoops of batter on the griddle. The first four chocolate chip pancakes looked lovely. Maybe it had worked!
I asked Marc, “How do they taste?”“I’m still chewing,” he replied. (Oh, that can’t be good!)I waited patiently and asked, “Do they taste okay?”“Yes, they’re delicious!” he said.
Whew! My little bit of this and little bit of that idea had worked.
Posted on Two Writing Teachers, 2/17/08, http://twowritingteachers.wordpress.com/2008/02/17/slice-of-life-story-pancakes-for-breakfast/.
Was The Bear Cold?
“Proceed to the first landing,” I told my Assembly Line Managers once I saw that my class was ready to leave the lunch room.
I saw a big bump under one of my student’s coats, which she was holding in her arms, and decided to stay at the back of the line. What could she have under there? I wondered.
As the children passed me I saw a bit of fur sticking out from the top of the coat. Then, I saw two ears and two eyes peeking back at me. I saw them for just a second because this student quickly replaced the hood over the item inside of her coat. I grinned.
Once the kids stopped at the first landing, I came up behind this student and whispered, “Was the bear cold?” in her ear. She giggled, as did two of her classmates who were beside her. She was caught with the bear, but I think she knew as well as I did that I was NOT about to take it away. (I’m a sucker for teddy bears!)
When we got upstairs to the classroom, I said, “Put your coats away. When you get tapped, come in and check your mail.” However to this student I said, “C’mon in here with your coat.” She didn’t come right away, since I don’t usually tell my kids to bring their coats inside. However, a few students realized what I was up to once they saw my camera. I just had to capture to this moment. Hence, she held up her coat, with the bear still inside, so I could photograph this moment.
Anyway, we came inside after that… the bear stayed outside ’til the end of the school day at which point it reappeared, though not inside of her coat.
Posted on Two Writing Teachers, 3/5/08, http://twowritingteachers.wordpress.com/2008/03/05/staceys-slice-of-life-story-day-5/,.
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