Tag Archives: writing

Where to Find Mentor Texts

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In Writing with Mentors, high school teachers Allison Marchetti and Rebekah O’Dell prove that the key to cultivating productive, resourceful writers—writers who can see value and purpose for writing beyond school—is using dynamic, current mentor texts.

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How Can The Writing Strategies Book Help With Your Own Writing Goals This Summer?

brad-neathery-258926 (1)photo: Brad Neathery

Jennifer Serravallo's The Writing Strategies Book offers help for all steps in the writing process, and while it is intended for grades K–8, we find ourselves turning to it regularly to find new ways of thinking, refining, and sharpening our own writing.  Have you made a goal of writing more over the summer? Is it somewhat daunting? overwhelming? terrifying?

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What Kind of Writers Do We Hope To See In Our Classrooms?

E08880_Fletcher_Bookcover_9201Adapted from the introduction to Joy Write: Cultivating High-Impact, Low-Stakes Writing, by Ralph Fletcher


In the autumn of 1983 I started in the MFA writing program at Columbia. This led to a famous first encounter, at least for me. In September I wandered uptown from 116th Street to 120th Street, walked into Teachers College, and met Lucy Calkins for the first time. She was a brand-new professor. I signed up for Lucy’s first course on the teaching of writing. Soon after that I took a position with the TC Reading and Writing Project as a consultant in New York City schools, helping teachers find wiser ways of teaching writing.

I didn’t realize it then, but more than taking an interesting job, I had embarked on my career. I have spent most of my professional life speaking, demonstrating, and writing books about the teaching of writing. Recently I ran into a teacher, a man in whose classroom I had worked twenty years earlier.

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How Reading and Writing Workshop Can Support STEM Learning

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille​

For the past several years, the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) subjects have stepped into the spotlight. And for good reason. James Brown, the executive director of the STEM Education Coalition in Washington, D.C., has said, "The future of the economy is in STEM. That’s where the jobs of tomorrow will be.” According to the website of The STEM Education Coalition, "Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) support [Brown’s] assertion. Employment in occupations related to STEM—science, technology, engineering, and mathematics—is projected to grow to more than 9 million between 2012 and 2022." 

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Making Reading Notebooks Awesome

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by Anna Gratz Cockerille

One of the most challenging aspects of teaching reading is that reading work is mainly invisible. The older students grow, the more sophisticated their thinking and their books become, and the harder it is to assess how much of their reading they are grasping. Reading teachers need ways to make students’ thinking visible. This is why channeling students to talk and write about their reading is so crucial. But students need more than just time to talk and write. They need instruction in ways to lift the level of their work so that their talk, their writing, and, ultimately, their reading, gets richer. 

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Joy Write with Ralph Fletcher

Joy Write Ralph Fletcher

On today’s podcast, putting the fun back into writing. Ralph Fletcher says nothing helps writers grow like practice, but not just any kind of practice will do, you’ve got to bring the joy! In his new book, Joy Write, Ralph shares the whys and the how of giving students time and autonomy for the playful, low-stakes writing that leads to surprising, high-level growth. Ralph talks about how the element of fun has disappeared from classrooms, so we started our conversation with why that is. 

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