Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Writing Highlights of the Week, Edition 1

Since I've become a literacy coach, my days have drastically changed.  Rather than spending everyday with the same group of students over the course of a year, I am now tasked with balancing my days across classrooms in six schools throughout Palo Alto supporting teachers and students with literacy teaching and learning.  In addition, I'm also part of a team that plans professional development activities that support our elementary goals.  Needless to say, it is quite the change!

My absolute favorite part of this new role is going directly into classrooms to work with kiddos and teachers on writing.  My school district is devoting a lot of time and funding into our writing curriculum, Lucy Calkins' Units of Study.  Our teachers are devoting a great amount of time and effort into learning and implementing this philosophy and method. In the process, our students are becoming proficient, skilled, and happy writers.  

I want to highlight their work.  I want people to see the wonderful things that I see each day in classrooms across my school district.  As a classroom teacher who also taught these units just last year, I know how hard the work is.  Now, as a literacy coach working in many K-5 classrooms, I know how devoted all of my teaching colleagues are to the literacy development of our students.  

In my new Writing Highlights of the Week posts, I'm going to highlight the efforts of our students and teachers each week.  Here is edition #1.  Enjoy!

First Grade

First grade writers took note of George McClements' use of exact
actions in Night of the Veggie Monster.  They then applied
this skill to their own writing!

A first grade writer sharing how he used an exact action from a character
in his writing during the teaching share portion of a narrative lesson.

Using a sticky note arrow to point out the exact action!

Fourth Grade

A higher-level thinking lesson asked fourth grade writers to
push their thinking.  And push their thinking they did! 

A demonstration using shared writing- fourth grade writers helped me
push my thinking about why I believe San Francisco is a great city.

One fourth grade writer stretched her thinking in her
description of why Lake Tahoe is the "best vacation spot."

Writing partners shared how they pushed and stretched their thinking
during the teaching share of a fourth grade Boxes and Bullets lesson.

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