Monday, May 22, 2017

Weekly $25 Teachers pay Teachers Gift Card Giveaway May 22, 2017




This Friday is our last day of school for the 2016-2017 school year!  Even though it is the last few days, I am still planning because I will be teaching summer school (Kinder ELL), and I just can't turn that teaching brain off!

If you are like me, I'm sure you'd love a $25 Teachers pay Teachers gift card!  Even if you're not in planning mode, you can save it until Back to School!




GIVEAWAY DETAILS:  

Prize: $25 Teachers Pay Teachers Gift Card

Giveaway Organized by: Kelly Malloy (An Apple for the Teacher)



Rules: Use the Rafflecopter to enter.  Giveaway ends 5/29/17 and is open worldwide.


Are you a Teacher Blogger or Teachers pay Teachers seller who wants to participate in giveaways like these to grow your store and social media?  Click here to find out how you can join our totally awesome group of bloggers! 



a Rafflecopter giveaway




Sunday, May 21, 2017

Writing Strategies Goal 7: Word Choice



Welcome to our book study of The Writing Strategies Book:  Your Everything Guide to Developing Skilled Writers by Jennifer Serravallo! I am joining forces with some other fabulous teacher bloggers to discuss the writing strategies we come across in this AMAZING professional text!    

Because this book isn't your typical professional development book filled with individual "chapters" of narrative, each teacher blogger will be giving you a glimpse into the 10 goals that are represented in the text.  Each goal area is filled with many valuable strategies that will help you to support and guide your students as they become better writers.  Keep in mind, we are only highlighting a FEW strategies in each section.  There are over 300 strategies in the whole book!

You can find my posts for previous sections below:







This goal is all about Word Choice.  Serravallo says that the words we choose as writers "have the power to communicate tone, clarify an intended meaning (or not), and give writing voice".  If students don't carefully consider their choice of words, they can end up with writing that is vague or flat.

She also says that some writers don't need to give deliberate attention to word choice.  These students write with voice and clarity already.  For others, strategies in this section will help elevate their writing and style.






When choosing this as a goal for your students to work on, you may want to consider students who:

* write pieces that are organized and detailed, but could use work communicating their meaning by being more specific or precise.

* could use help varying the words they use in their writing.


Focus Strategy 1: Onomatopoeia: Sound Effects

My students LOVE this strategy - quite possible because the word onomatopoeia sounds so funny, but, I will take any reason for engagement and excitement about writing!  

You ask the student to imagine themselves inside their story.  What do they hear? How would they write that word?

You could introduce this strategy with the video below:





You might also want to provide students with an anchor chart like the one below as well.


Focus Strategy 2: Write With Authority: Domain Specific Vocabulary

This strategy asks students to keep a list if words authors use about the topics they are researching.  They could then use the list to help them use domain specific vocabulary in their writing.  

You might start the lesson with an anchor chart like this one from the book.


Focus Strategy 3: Precise Nouns


In this strategy, students return to their drafts, underlining all of the nouns.  They should look back at these nouns and ask themselves, "Can I get any more specific?"  Instead of just saying the boy, could they mention them by name?

I might introduce this strategy with one of our current read alouds, such as Wonder.



I would have the students see if they can find the different nouns in a page, and see where the author was REALLY specific.  In this page they might notice that the costumes were specifically Egyptian costumes and Indiana Jones-type archaeologists. I would ask them, " How do these specific nouns help the readers make a better picture in their mind?"

If you would like to purchase the book mentioned above, you can find it here.



This post contains affiliate links. I earn a small commission each time someone makes a purchase using one of my links, which helps to support the blog.  All opinions are my own and I only promote brands and products that I have used myself and truly love.  

If you would like to link up your own blog posts about this book, feel free to do so in the linky below!  Don't forget to check out the other bloggers' posts as well as they write them for even more ideas!





Monday, May 15, 2017

Weekly $25 Teachers pay Teachers Gift Card Giveaway May 15, 2017





The end of school year is fast approaching!  We only have 2 weeks left of school!  But, I'm sure many of you are already getting a head start on next year.  Wouldn't a $25 Teachers pay Teachers gift card come in handy?




GIVEAWAY DETAILS:  

Prize: $25 Teachers Pay Teachers Gift Card

Giveaway Organized by: Kelly Malloy (An Apple for the Teacher)



Rules: Use the Rafflecopter to enter. Giveaway ends 5/22/17 and is open worldwide.

Are you a Teacher Blogger or Teachers pay Teachers seller who wants to participate in giveaways like these to grow your store and social media?  Click here to find out how you can join our totally awesome group of bloggers! 


a Rafflecopter giveaway



Friday, May 12, 2017

Writing Strategies Goal 6: Elaboration



Welcome to our book study of The Writing Strategies Book:  Your Everything Guide to Developing Skilled Writers by Jennifer Serravallo! I am joining forces with some other fabulous teacher bloggers to discuss the writing strategies we come across in this AMAZING professional text!    

Because this book isn't your typical professional development book filled with individual "chapters" of narrative, each teacher blogger will be giving you a glimpse into the 10 goals that are represented in the text.  Each goal area is filled with many valuable strategies that will help you to support and guide your students as they become better writers.  Keep in mind, we are only highlighting a FEW strategies in each section.  There are over 300 strategies in the whole book!

You can find my posts for previous sections below:










Serravallo defines elaboration as "the specific information a writer uses to develop her writing".  She says it can include things such as details, facts, dialogue, descriptions and more.  She says it is the purposeful detail that brings a piece of writing to life and conveys the author's purpose.



When choosing this as a goal for your students to work on, you may want to consider students who:

* write with very few details.

* need help varying details.

* need support in deciding what details should be included.
Focus Strategy 1: Nudge Paper

I love this strategy!  It is for those students who aren't quite sure about making a change.  You have them take out a strip of scratch paper (or Post-It Note) that they can use to try out the change.  They can later decide if they want to keep that change.




Focus Strategy 2: See the World Like a Poet (Metaphor and Simile)

I love this idea for adding more interesting details to writing. Students think of the features they might want to compare, what else has similar features?  

I love to use the mentor text Crazy Like a Fox A Simile Story to help students understand similes.


Focus Strategy 3: Prove It

This strategy asks students to think of their idea, claim, or thesis, and ask themselves, what reasons they have for thinking that way.  What details prove what they want to say? These reasons become extra details to help convince their reader.


If you would like to purchase the book mentioned above, you can find it here.



This post contains affiliate links. I earn a small commission each time someone makes a purchase using one of my links, which helps to support the blog.  All opinions are my own and I only promote brands and products that I have used myself and truly love.  


Make sure to visit Kathleen over at  Courage Doesn't Always Roar. She is our official hostess for this week, and she has some more strategies and great ideas for you!

If you would like to link up your own blog posts about this book, feel free to do so in the linky below!  Don't forget to check out the other bloggers' posts as well as they write them for even more ideas!





Monday, May 8, 2017

Weekly $25 Teachers pay Teachers Gift Card Giveaway May 8, 2017





Our weekly giveaways are one of my favorite parts of the week!  How would you like to win a $25 Teachers pay Teachers gift card?




GIVEAWAY DETAILS:  

Prize: $25 Teachers Pay Teachers Gift Card

Giveaway Organized by: Kelly Malloy (An Apple for the Teacher)




Rules: Use the Rafflecopter to enter. Giveaway ends 5/15/17 and is open worldwide.

Are you a Teacher Blogger or Teachers pay Teachers seller who wants to participate in giveaways like these to grow your store and social media?  Click here to find out how you can join our totally awesome group of bloggers! 


a Rafflecopter giveaway



Saturday, May 6, 2017

Monthly $75 Teachers pay Teachers Gift Card Giveaway - May 2017





If you are on a traditional year round school schedule, you are on the home stretch of the school year!  We get out on May 26th this year! 

But... if you are anything like me, the school brain doesn't turn off just because it's summer - you are likely already thinking about the next school year!

And, lucky for you, you have a chance to win a $75 Teachers pay Teachers gift card to help you get ready!

Once you have entered, be sure to click on my Giveaway tab to enter all of the other giveaways this month!





GIVEAWAY DETAILS

Prize: $75 Teachers pay Teachers Gift Card

Giveaway organized by: Kelly Malloy (An Apple for the Teacher), 






Are you a blogger who wants to participate in giveaways like these to grow your blog?  Click here to find out how you can join a totally awesome group of bloggers!


a Rafflecopter giveaway  




Thursday, May 4, 2017

Writing Strategies: Goal 5: Organization and Structure



Welcome to our book study of The Writing Strategies Book:  Your Everything Guide to Developing Skilled Writers by Jennifer Serravallo! I am joining forces with some other fabulous teacher bloggers to discuss the writing strategies we come across in this AMAZING professional text!    

Because this book isn't your typical professional development book filled with individual "chapters" of narrative, each teacher blogger will be giving you a glimpse into the 10 goals that are represented in the text.  Each goal area is filled with many valuable strategies that will help you to support and guide your students as they become better writers.  Keep in mind, we are only highlighting a FEW strategies in each section.  There are over 300 strategies in the whole book!

You can find my posts for previous sections below:









The organization and structure of a writing pieces is like the framing of a building.  If a building doesn't have a frame, the walls will fall down.  Likewise, if a writing pieces doesn't have an organized framework, the reader might be confused.


Serravallo says that the strategies in this section aren't just for the planning of the overall piece, but also ways to improve parts of their piece such as the lead and the ending. 





Serravallo provides a progression of what can be expected at various grade levels in terms of structure.  She has a separate one for narrative, opinion, and informational writing.  You can find where your student is at, and look toward the next step to help them improve their writing organization.
Focus Strategy 1: Organize in Sequence

This strategy is good for helping students to organize narratives that move along chronologically.  Serravallo suggests that students make a list of what happened first, next, after that, finally, etc.

You could have students use Post-It notes to help them organize.

Focus Strategy 2: Question, Answer

In this strategy, students think of a list of questions a reader might have about the topic they are writing about.  They then think about how they might answer the question in one to three sentences.

Serravallo suggests they use a new page in a notebook for each question.  They could also use index cards for each question.



Focus Strategy 3: End With Last Words From the Character

This strategy can help students to write stronger endings.  They think about what the character might say at the very end.  What is the last thing they want their reader to hear from the character?

I might use the last paragraph in Number the Stars to illustrate this particular strategy.






If you would like to purchase the book mentioned above, you can find it here.



This post contains affiliate links. I earn a small commission each time someone makes a purchase using one of my links, which helps to support the blog.  All opinions are my own and I only promote brands and products that I have used myself and truly love.  



Make sure to visit Kelly over at Digging Deep to Soar Beyond the Text.  She is our official hostess for this week, and she has some more strategies and great ideas for you!

If you would like to link up your own blog posts about this book, feel free to do so in the linky below!  Don't forget to check out the other bloggers' posts as well as they write them for even more ideas!





Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Writing Strategies Goal 4: Focus/Meaning




Welcome to our book study of The Writing Strategies Book:  Your Everything Guide to Developing Skilled Writers by Jennifer Serravallo! I am joining forces with some other fabulous teacher bloggers to discuss the writing strategies we come across in this AMAZING professional text!    

Because this book isn't your typical professional development book filled with individual "chapters" of narrative, each teacher blogger will be giving you a glimpse into the 10 goals that are represented in the text.  Each goal area is filled with many valuable strategies that will help you to support and guide your students as they become better writers.  Keep in mind, we are only highlighting a FEW strategies in each section.  There are over 300 strategies in the whole book!

If you missed our other posts you can find them here:






When we read a book or an article, we assume that the author is writing about a particular topic, and that the author communicates a point.  For example, if you were reading an article about global warning, you wouldn't expect the author to all of the sudden include  a section about why their favorite food is pizza.

Students often struggle with the process of focusing their writing on a particular subject or topic.  Serravallo suggests that we teach students that it's important to have a focal point in mind when they begin writing, but they should also be open to revisions as their writing progresses if they find that it is not going as planned.




When choosing this as a goal for your students to work on, you may want to consider students who:

* have a difficult time articulating their focus.

* have a difficult time matching details to their focus topic.


Serravallo recommends conferencing with a student to help determine if they could use support with this goal.  She suggests asking them, "What do you think your piece is mostly about?"

Does their writing reflect their answer? If not, consider this as a possible goal for the student.
Focus Strategy 1: Ask Questions to Focus

This strategy is a great one for those students who tend to have too big or broad a topic as they write.  This might be a student who is writing about every single detail about their summer vacation when they really want to write about learning to swim. It might also include a student who is writing about how to take care of a dog, but also includes lists of breeds or other types of pets.

This strategy has the writer ask themselves questions to narrow it down such as:

What are you really trying to say?
What is the most important thing about my topic?
What details support this particular topic? Which ones go off course?



Focus Strategy 2: Imagine Your Audience and Consider Your Purpose

My students often struggle with writing with their audience in mind, so I was really drawn to this strategy.  

Serravallo suggests that students think about the purpose of their writing.  Are they writing to entertain, inform, or persuade?  Then, they should think specifically about who the reader will be and what they will want to know about.




Focus Strategy 3: Find a Theme in Your Collection

This strategy is great for students who are working on informative or persuasive pieces.  It works best when the student has collected several pieces of research or writing material.

Students look back at the material they have collected to see if they can find patterns in the details that fit together.  They can ask themselves what main idea or ideas they could focus their informational text on.




If you would like to purchase the book mentioned above, you can find it here.



This post contains affiliate links. I earn a small commission each time someone makes a purchase using one of my links, which helps to support the blog.  All opinions are my own and I only promote brands and products that I have used myself and truly love.  

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Make sure to visit Tried and True Teaching Tools, our official hostess for this week, for even more ideas!

If you would like to link up your own blog posts about this book, feel free to do so in the linky below!  Don't forget to check out the other bloggers' posts as well as they write them for even more ideas!





Monday, May 1, 2017

Weekly $25 Teachers pay Teachers Gift Card Giveaway May 1, 2017





Can you believe it is already May? I don't know about you, but the last few months have flown by! We are finishing up testing, have a few field trips planned, and then this school year will come to an end!

As I was writing this blog post, I bumped into this funny May Meme.



It made me chuckle for a second, but we all know in reality, that it just isn't possible!  As teachers we want to squeeze in every last drop of learning we can into our kiddos before they leave us for the next grade!

To help you with that we are giving away a $25 Teachers pay Teachers gift card! 

AND... After you finish entering this giveaway, be sure to check out our Teacher Appreciation Giveaway as well!




GIVEAWAY DETAILS:  

Prize: $25 Teachers Pay Teachers Gift Card

Giveaway Organized by: Kelly Malloy (An Apple for the Teacher)



Rules: Use the Rafflecopter to enter. Giveaway ends 5/8/17 and is open worldwide.

Are you a Teacher Blogger or Teachers pay Teachers seller who wants to participate in giveaways like these to grow your store and social media?  Click here to find out how you can join our totally awesome group of bloggers! 


a Rafflecopter giveaway




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