Sunday, October 19, 2014

Writing Mini Lesson 1- Brainstorming for Interactive Notebooks

Hello all!  It is a crisp fall morning here in the Carolinas and boy does it feel good to get away from the heat!  This will be good for my hot flashes too!  Ha!  I apologize for my absence here.  I've missed younz'all!  (yes that is a combo of Pittsburgh and the south).  For any newcomers out there, I mainly blog about writing but throw in some Social Studies and organizing tips along the way!  I am a northerner living in the south.  My southern friends crack me up daily with their sayings and expressions so of course after living here for fifteen years, I've picked some of them up.  I put a little Pittsburgh twist to them though.  Ha!  I am planning out a series of writing workshop mini lessons for my blog.  This is the first of many!!!!! So if you need ideas, follow along!  The first one is about brainstorming for the year.  This will give students ideas throughout the year whenever they are in a rut and can't think of what to write about in their notebook.  Enjoy and see ya next time for writing mini lesson 2- Paragraph writing- Complete Sentences!  ROCK 'N' WRITE!
     
Writing Discussion and Brainstorming


As a whole group, discuss the following questions and write on a chart.  What do writers do?  Why are writing notebooks important?  (write thoughts, share stories, resource, personal)

Brainstorming Ideas:
Here are some things you may add to your idea’s section of your notebook.  This will set the stage for the year and give them a place to go to find things to write about.  I would suggest to either do an Interest Inventory or the following:





1.Heart:  Have students cut out the heart and fill it with words that tell what they love.  Use the poster to help them think of ideas.

2.Question Mark:  Have students cut out the question mark and have them fill it with things that want to know.

3.House-  List family members.  Don’t limit it to members who live with them!  Around the house, list things that their family does together…weekends, summer, mornings, evenings…etc.

4.I-  This is a page where they can tell more about themselves.  “I am”

5.Trace hand.-  Use the hand or have students trace their hand.  List a feeling on each finger and one on palm.  Write examples of when they felt that way.  Use the Feelings Poster.

6.Treasure Map- Draw a picture of their yard or favorite place.  Mark an x by a place where they have a favorite memory.



AS A LITTLE BONUS:  HERE IS AN IDEA FOR TRACKING THEIR PROGRESS THROUGH THE MINI LESSONS!


TRACKING FORMS

HAVE YOUR STUDENTS TRACK THEIR OWN PROGRESS!  TAKE SOME STRESS OFF OF YOURSELF!  This is highly effective in my classroom!  
        
There are two columns for tracking. “First” and “Second”. If they retest or you decide to reteach the whole class, they can record their second score. I like to give them their percentages except on the bigger writing pieces that have rubrics. Then I have them write down their rubric number 5, 3, or 1. They can easily see their strengths and weaknesses which is helpful when they develop their goals for their next writing piece.   CLICK HERE to get the page below.  I have others for Opinion Writing and Informative Writing!  They will be later in the mini lesson series!



Stay Tuned:  Next up is Writing Mini Lesson 2- Complete Sentences
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