Create confident writers in a classroom or through online writing lessons
Are you stressing out trying to come up with a way to create confident writers and integrate writer’s workshop into your upper elementary classroom? Teaching writing can be painless and fun, whether you’re in a brick and mortar classroom or teacher online writing lessons! Follow these simple instructional strategies to improve students’ writing quality and transform their mindset about writing as a whole.
The first step to creating an engaging writing environment for students is that it all starts with your mentality. Are you enthusiastic and excited about your in-person or online writing lessons? This will translate quickly to become the attitude of your students! We want to start the school year with a positive and exciting outlook about writing. EVERYONE is a writer, and you need to instill this belief in your students early on! It helps to refer to your students as “writers” and “young authors” in order to build them up and shape the belief that their words are valuable. We want to transition from the idea of “writing lessons” to creating a community of writers within your classroom.
Build a strong writing community
Another important step in creating confident writers is letting students have some ownership in their writing community. It’s so important to collaborate together as a class to set the mood and expectations for writing time. When students value the atmosphere that they create, they are more likely to be respectful and stick to the guidelines. Just as any other activity in class, achieving this community writing feel will take practice. Remember to remain consistent with expectations each day. A strong back to school writing curriculum, like my Back To School Writing Unit, has awesome strategies for collaborating with students to create a productive class atmosphere during writer’s workshop time. Throwing in a reward, such as listening to music on Fridays during writing time, may also help to keep students motivated and excited, which is a great way to create confident writers.
Plan for writing challenges
Every teacher feels the pain of the “I don’t know what to write” whine! It’s pretty much immediate when writing time begins! Although most end up feeling the dreaded “writer’s block” at some point, it can be discouraging. In order for all students to feel like an active part of the classroom writing community, it’s especially important to tackle the idea of writer’s block head-on. Creating vision boards, listening to music, and even viewing artwork in your mini-lessons can help with inspiration. Remind students to refer back to these things if their ideas start feeling flat. You can’t edit an empty page, so students should understand the expectation that above all they must push through and just keep writing!
Model the writing process for students
Once an active classroom community of writers is established for writing instruction, the magic begins! Be sure to break up writing skills into manageable chunks using mini-lessons before free writing time. Whether you’re in a classroom or completing an online writing lesson, demonstrate and share your own writing process so that students view you as a part of their writing community as well. This really helps create confident writers as they learn that even teachers aren’t perfect! Implement regular reflection time, as students always feel inspired by seeing how far they’ve come! Allowing ample opportunities to share and publish is essential in ensuring that all students are actively producing quality work. If writing time was once a painful point in your day, try building a collaborative writing community. You’ll be surprised at how students will look forward to this, as it quickly becomes a valued time for young authors to express themselves and their ideas!
Wondering how to fit it all in?
Grab one of my Writing Units to create confident writers this year! I have never had a student say they dislike writing, and I owe it all to these writing units. It’s all ready for a brick and mortar classroom and a distance learning situation. So you can switch back and forth with ease.
Your instructions are so comprehensive that they gave me confidence as I delved into the unknown world of writer’s workshop.Jamie S.
ALL of Kelly Anne’s writing units are absolutely incredible!! The students find them engaging and I find them fool-proof. Thank you for the awesome product!Crystal M.