Ways to Study the Teaching of Writing with Your Colleages: PD Ideas for Inside & Outside the Classroom K-8

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille

Albert Einstein once said, “Intellectual growth should commence at birth and should cease only at death.” In no profession is this commitment to lifelong learning more important and more apparent than in teaching. Teachers know we are never finished learning. We spend our time not in the classroom studying, observing, discussing, and collaborating in order to become the best teachers we can be. 

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PLC Series: Writing Identities

Welcome to a new year of content and conversation in Heinemann's PLC Series. This month we focus on the craft of teaching writers—not the writing.


When we provide time and space for our students to be writers, they can immerse themselves in creating something of incredible value: a writing identity. 

In this clip from Introduction to Writing Workshop by Stephanie Parsons, we have the pleasure of hearing from a few students about what it means to them to be a writer. There are few things more enjoyable than hearing children share their voice so please enjoy this short clip from her On Demand Course!

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The Heinemann Podcast: Writing the 4th Edition of Making The Journey

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It’s not often your favorite author asks you to co-write their next book, but that’s exactly what happened to Ken Lindblom when he met Leila Christenbury at a NCTE lunch a couple of years ago. Ken was telling Leila how influential her book, Making the Journey, had been to him as he started his teaching career and then to his education students. Leila suggested that with the right partner a new edition might be possible and from there, the duo teamed up. Listen as Leila and Ken offer up timeless advice, humorous anecdotes, and stories of successes and failures in the classroom that they have infused into the 4th edition of Making the Journey. They instill confidence in soon-to-be English teachers, and that’s where we started our conversation. 

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What Can I Expect to See in The Writing Strategies Book?

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Jennifer Serravallo's Writing Strategies Book, available mid-February, is the much-anticipated follow-up to The Reading Strategies Book, which made the New York Times Best Seller List by making it simpler to match students’ needs to high-quality instruction. Now, in The Writing Strategies Book, Jen Serravallo does the same, collecting 300 of the most effective strategies to share with writers, and grouping them beneath 10 crucial writing goals. In the following video, Jen walks us through the new book, its structure and the ways to use it as a tool in any classroom.

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Teaching Empathy: Using Read Aloud and Text Sets to Think and Talk about Social Justice K-5

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille 

In the classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Atticus Finch teaches his children, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.” Empathy is the ability to understand the feelings, plight, or situation of another. It is recognizing and valuing perspectives that are different from one’s own. It is the basis for relationships and, some would even argue, is vital to survival.

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PLC Series: Independent Writing Time

Welcome to a new year of content and conversation in our PLC Series. This month we focus on the craft of teaching writers—not the writing.


One of the most overwhelming pieces for teachers in a reading and writing workshop model is managing all of the moving parts. If writing workshop is new for you, it is likely that fears swirl into questions in your mind: Can they write on their own? How do I release control? How do coach my writers as individuals when there are so many of them?

Teacher and blogger Betsy Hubbard (@Betsy_Writes) shares her wisdom in this article, available for download below, from the Heinemann Digital Library.  She describes the roles of monitoring and conferring with writers, as well explains how these practices support each other. Reflecting on the notes that emerge from monitoring and conferring provide valuable information that inform both you as the teacher and the students as they work to build independence.

Making the Most of Independent Writing Time_Hubbard.pdf

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Looking for more PD on this topic?

Online: This article is one of many available to you with a Digital Library Subscription. Find out more here!

Off-Site: Which authors are coming to your area for one day workshops? Click here to browse the list by region, author, or state.

On-Site: Take a look at school-based seminars, and consulting authors and speakers available to you by clicking here.

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  Betsy Hubbard (@BetsyWrites) Betsy Hubbard is a  kindergarten and first grade teacher. She is a co-author at  the blog Two Writing Teachers and also blogs at I Think in   Poems, Teaching Young Writers, and I’m Living My Words.