Writing every day is one of my non-negotiable items for students no matter their grade level. I know when teachers hear me say that, one of the things they [guiltily] imagine is MORE grading and planning in an already busy life. Adding more writing can certainly turn into that if we let it, but it doesn't have to be that way.
Writing more frequently is an opportunity for students to practice, and I don't grade practice work. Why? It stifles creativity and student's willingness to take risks in their writing and thinking. In short, my purpose is to give students a chance to play with writing, thinking in new ways, get more comfortable with writing and challenge themselves.
The answer is Quick Writes - short, fast moments to try something new, think deeply or offer their thoughts and opinions on all...
I'm going to jump all the way into the deep end here and offend quite a few people on BOTH sides of the issue. Guess what?! I'm here to tell you the truth, not be popular.
There are a few instances in which worksheets are effective. However, most of the time, relying on worksheets on a regular basis in all subjects is a way we mask problems and struggles in our teaching.
I do not jump on bandwagons, and I try very hard to NOT throw out great resources and teaching practices when trying something new. So, I have to say sometimes worksheets, when used correctly, ARE appropriate. I know that's not the current rhetoric in education, but it's true. When we think of worksheets as supports or guideposts we can put into place to help students become independent (and not need them), they are very appropriate.
This is the time of year where we're not only prepping for the end of school but thinking of what we'll do the same and differently next year. It's funny how those things are intricately tied together.
I've got a few things for you for end-of-year, summer boosts and gathering all those thoughts and ideas for next year as well. Wow! That's a lot of stuff, right?! No worries, I'll make it as simple and easy as I can.
As we near the end of the year, it can be difficult to keep track of all the moving parts to get things wrapped up, packed up and ready for summer. Here's my [free] End-of-Year Checklist to help you with that.
While you probably know I'm NOT a fan of summer homework, you might not know this bit. I'm a HUGE fan of sneaky ways to get kids learning and reading without even knowing it's the dreaded "practice" they want to avoid. So here's two items to help you support parents in this quest.