73 Comprhensive Classroom Tested Worksheets
Why this writing program?
A few years ago I tried to find a teacher friendly writing program. I found many programs written for the primary grades for beginning writers. I found several programs written for more advanced writers using terminology that Upper Elementary and Junior High teachers would rarely get to.
I wrote this program for ME to use in my multi-graded classroom. The reasons this program works for me (and maybe for you) are:
-Integrate Creative Writing with the reading students are doing in novels or Language Arts. The students’ reading provides them a context from which they can write, why not tap into the worlds they have gone to in their reading?
-Varied story starters. As much as I believe in using the students’ reading as a source, varying the story prompts. Individual students respond better to different prompts.
-Classroom proven marking guides. The marking guides in this program have been “field tested” in a real classroom. I have refined the marking guides so that students know what is expected for the various assignments.
-Poetry: Student don’t know how much they like it until they do. In recent years we have put together a poetry binder of our creations. As we begin our week long work with similes the first thing we do is read the similes we have collected in our binder. Half of our binder collection is poems written by students in the class. Reading the work of peers inspires students to want to do more. Why did it take me almost 20 years of teaching to find out how much fun students had with poetry?
-Story Writing Focus: One of the last additions to my Creative Writing program was the Story Writing Focus. In my early years of teaching I asked students to write narrative stories and I marked them; that was fine. Once we have developed the basic routine of story writing, I add one focus for each assignment. Having students focus on a Quick Start highlights the need to engage writers early in a story. I still want the students to write a complete story; however additional emphasis (and marks) can be placed on the Writing Focus area. It is more effective focus on different areas each story for two reasons. First, it creates a variety of what they are working on. Second, it is not possible to focus on all of the 16 writing focus areas at once – trying to do too much means we get nothing done effectively.
-Basics Covered – The writing tools and strategies in this book cover the basic skills and content that Upper Elementary and Junior High classrooms need. If we cover the basics effectively we can later build on that.
Teacher Ready - Teachers are too busy to read a 50 page document describing why this writing program is philosophically ideal for classroom education. This program provides Teacher Ready worksheets with only minimal babbling on by me. Teachers don’t have time to read all that – they need to get the material ready.