I am linking up with Fourth Grade Flipper for Tried it Tuesday!
Today I tried a writing technique a fellow teacher had shared with us last year, but I had never gotten around to using it. This year I decided I needed to give it a try, because my kiddos HATE writing! It is almost like pulling teeth to even get them to write a paragraph. So... I decided to give it a try.
The idea is to provide the students with a picture prompt. They then have 10 minutes to write as much as they can with the goal to increase the amount they write each time.
Here is the picture prompt I used today:
I have this one and a ton of other great picture prompts on my Writing Prompts Pinterest Board. I will be adding to this as I find more. You can also follow all of my Pinterest Boards here.
After I showed the students the prompt, we brainstormed out loud. Ignore my messy handwriting (and the room as well - it always seems like a tornado goes through it during the day!).
I can't emphasize enough about how important I believe the verbal brainstorming before writing is.
Then the students got to work.
Some wrote at their tables.
Others chose to stay on the floor.
When they finished writing a few of them shared what they wrote.
The amazing thing was that some of them started adding to their writing spontaneously as they heard what others had written.
They even collaborated with each other.
Here are a few of the finished pieces. I chose to only give compliments rather than editing critiques so that they could really learn to love this time. I told them they could continue their stories during Work on Writing during Daily 5 or abandon them. That is an author's choice.
(I love her surprise ending!)
Some of them started to add dialogue which they hadn't previously done. I loved the results and I loved how engaged the students were! This is definitely something that I am glad that I tried!
Have you tried anything different in your classroom lately?