In my experience, students either love story writing or hate it. They either have ideas floating around in their heads, waiting for the next story writing unit–or they feel that they have no ideas and hope for a stomach bug that week! This is one reason I use the Directed Writing Approach in my books–so that each step of each type of paper is laid out incrementally.
One common problem that students have when story writing is telling “first this happened; then this happened; after this, that happened; later on, this happened” by students. What could be an exciting, action-packed story becomes a narrative/retelling–or worse yet, an essay. Have you ever wondered how to help students from the start with this rambling problem?
Writing ideas. Writing prompts. Writing suggestions.
These are the things that cause children who do not know *how* to write to hate writing.
And it is often what we do to kids in an effort to get the writing. But they do not work for these kinds of kids.
So what works?
Teaching writing is not for the faint of heart! It is the most subjective “subject” in school—and, consequently, can be one of the most challenging to teach. Oftentimes, materials designed to teach writing are more writing idea than writing instruction. They leave the student (and the teacher!) wondering exactly what to do to complete the writing prompt. This is one reason that after I write a book (one hundred in all!), test, test, and retest the book with real (or virtual starting this fall!) students to be sure that all of the steps are included and clear. Last week I shared a lesson from one of my books that I did with a mixed live/virtual class about writing from a given source. This week I’d love to give you another peek into my online writing classes for the fall with another cooperative “guinea pig” group!
I’m excited to announce a new downloadable product that is super user-friendly and effective! And…..it’s based on the story of Beauty and the Beast, so it’s super fun too!
I’ll give you the details of the product in a little bit, but I want to let you know how you can get your hands on this resource first.
The class: Senior High Composition. The place: Union City Community High School. The teacher: Mr. Leahey. The year: 1981. The student: Me….formerly straight A student for the last two years of high school…on the brink of breaking that perfect streak.
Yep, it snowed and snowed and snowed and snowed.
And this girl, who had let herself get behind on creating two hundred index cards of information for her senior paper on Robert Kennedy, had a chance for redemption.