“If the writing workshop is always changing, always haphazard, children remain pawns waiting for their teacher’s agenda. For this reason and others, I think it is so important for each day’s workshop to have a clear, simple structure. Children should know what to expect. This allows them to carry on; it frees the teacher from choreographing activities and allows time for listening. How we structure the workshop is less important than that we structure it.”
Learn how to teach narrative and expository writing with increasing power and intimacy and how Lucy Calkins and her colleagues launch a rigorous and responsive intermediate writing workshop. Through 2 foundational books—A Guide to the Writing Workshop and Launching the Writing Workshop—and eight online video clips, Lucy and her colleagues provide the strategies, lesson plans, and tools you’ll need to lead strong, efficient writing workshops in upper-elementary classrooms.
A Guide to the Writing Workshop equips you to teach a productive, well-managed writing workshop, introduces you to the methods that underlie all writing instruction, and helps you plan a yearlong curriculum in the teaching of writing. After chronicling the guiding principles that shape a writing workshop, Lucy details the developmental stages of upper-elementary writers. Ensuing chapters describe the architecture of minilessons, conferences, and small-group strategy sessions and explain how the predictability of these frameworks fosters independence and self-direction. In addition to describing the management systems that make writing workshops possible, select chapters consider various ways to tailor instruction and address the demands of the contemporary classroom.
In Launching the Writing Workshop Lucy helps you launch both your writing workshop and your yearlong writing curriculum. While initiating students into the structures and rituals of the writing workshop, this unit also reviews and teaches the essentials of writing—collecting, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing. In addition to introducing practical strategies for finding topics and generating writing, children practice the strategy of making movies in their minds and writing so readers can picture exactly what is happening. Students also learn the value of focusing on small moments in such detail that readers feel they are experiencing the event.
Through the eight accompanying video clips Lucy and her colleagues open the doors of their classrooms and invite you to eavesdrop on their elementary writing workshops. These live-from-the-classroom video clips are supported and enhanced by an optional voice-over coaching commentary from Lucy that explains the teaching moves and strategies. (Video clips are free for 6 months upon registration. You must register within 6 months of purchase.)
Learn more about these resources and the series at www.unitsofstudy.com.
This pack is part of firsthand’s Getting Started series.
Bridging the gap between educational theory and practice, firsthand classroom materials model the carefully crafted techniques and language of master teachers in ways that help teachers refine their practice and reinvent their own teaching. The most comprehensive of these resources span more than a year of instruction. Firsthand’s Getting Started Packs were created for teachers in training and professional book study groups who want a compact, affordable way to study and tryout these transformative classroom materials. Each Getting Started Pack includes an overview book, a complete unit of study, online video clips provided free of charge for 6 months, and an accompanying study guide.
Getting Started packs include: Launch a Primary Writing Workshop, Grades K-2; Launch an Intermediate Writing Workshop, Grades 3-5; Launch an Intermediate Reading Workshop, Grades 3-5; Introduce the Qualities of Writing, Grades 3-6; Monitor Comprehension with Primary Students, Grades K-2; Monitor Comprehension with Intermediate Students, Grades 3-6; Investigate the Number System, Grades K-3; Investigate Multiplication, Grades 3-5; Investigate Fractions, Grades 4-6.