Preparing Ahead-Successful Summer Learning Tips

summer

Preparing For Summer Now Promotes Success

Schools and families can start planning for summer learning experiences in the spring. Children and teens can experience a variety of diverse learning experiences during the summer months.

Explore Summer School

Summer school offers an excellent opportunity to learn new skills and review others. College campuses often have interactive and engaging summer learning programs for students.

Sign-up For Summer Camps Now

Summer camps and events fill-up quickly! Families can start to explore summer enrichment opportunities to find the best fit for their child.

Use Interactive Books and Learning

An interactive notebook is a personalized, student-created textbook and study tool. It is an interactive, hands-on learning project that requires engagement and critical thinking. The interactive notebooks has many benefits.

  • Engages the learner
  • Provides scaffolding for the learner
  • Excellent for diverse leaners (EL, SEL, Special Education, etc.)
  • A resource for students, parents and teachers
  • A visual guide for learners
  • Excellent introduction and review of the Common Core State Standards
  • Reinforces academic skills

Families can help children and teens to create the notebooks in the summer.

Collect Summer Reading Titles

Starting a collection of books and magazines is a great way to get students exciting about reading. Store the reading materials in an old fashioned trunk or a beach bag.

Utilize Online Programs To Engage Students In Learning During the Summer

Youngsters and teens are tech savvy! Engage the brain by making an online learning a daily activity. Kids of all ages can read online books. They can document these books on the book logs, too! Thousands of online books are available on the Big Universe website. Children and teens can become math wizards by visiting the Khan Academy online math institute each day.

Plan To Visit Museums, Aquariums and Zoos

Want to get people of all ages interested in past events or science? Find out what they are currently interested in! What excites them? What are they passionate about? Do they like sports, the military, or are they interested in the American presidents? Are they interested in the history of fashion? Have them read books about that. Do they love the ocean? If so, they probably would be engaged and excited to visit a local museum or science exhibit.

Capitalize on people’s interests and start there. Gather brochures, books and information about that topic.

Get Students Excited About History By Having Them Publish Their Own Books

Set educational goals for children and teens. Let kids know that they will be creating their own online books. Students will love creating online books that they can share globally on the Big Universe website.

Read Online Books

nonfiction books

Students can reading colorful and engaging titles that can assist in learning the key standards and concepts. They can document new learning in their Summer Journals. These books offer a great opportunity to enrich student’s vocabulary and content knowledge. Big Universe offers thousands of titles in many different languages on a multitude of topics. Find texts in multiple genres as well as teacher resource guides on the Big Universe website.

For Further Reading

Young smiling student using her laptop in a libraryInteractive Notebooks

http://blog.biguniverse.com/2015/04/14/interactive-notebooks-for-learning/

Library Information

http://blog.biguniverse.com/2015/04/06/april-is-school-library-month/

 

http://blog.biguniverse.com/2015/03/23/how-schools-can-prepare-students-for-the-summer-months/

Growing Food, Growing Bodies

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The birds are singing, the frogs are chirping and the plants are beginning to grow. It’s the perfect time to get students outside and try some truly hands-on learning. Use the warm days and the itch to get outside to teach students the basics of food production and nutrition through an inquiry unit that combines explores gardening and nutrition. The best part is that the inquiry unit can be modified for any age group and used year after year.

Here are three ideas to get help get you started:

1) Plant a school garden. If there isn’t space for a larger garden, plant a classroom windowsill herb garden instead.

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2) Visit a local farm or farmer’s market. Discuss how food production and distribution are managed.

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3) Create and prepare a meal (or full menu) based on local food availability and nutritional guidelines.

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Resources from Big Universe

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Where Does Our Food Come From?
Bobbie Kalman (Author)
ISBN: 9781427196729

Grains, vegetables and fruits, meat, eggs, and dairy foods-where do these different food groups come from? Children will discover such things as how grains are grown in fields, which vegetables are really fruits, where certain fruits grow, and the importance of pollination. A special section gives children suggestions for eating healthy foods.

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Growing Good Food
Ann Flounders (author)
ISBN: 9781939656315

Have you thought about where your food comes from? Do you know the difference between organic and nonorganic foods, and is organic always a more healthful choice? Some farmers have opened their farms to the local community to help grow and pick crops. In this book, you’ll read why community-supported agriculture is growing fast and how the choices you make at the grocery store can make a big difference in Earth’s health as well as your own. Book features: Table of Contents; Glossary; For More Information including books and web sites; Index; photos and captions; charts and graphs; source notes.

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Fabulous Food
Jo Cleland (author)
ISBN: 9781618103482

Sung to the tune of The Farmer in the Dell, this book emphasizes the different food groups and how important they are for healthy teeth and bones.

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Comer Bien (Eating Right)
Dona Herweck Rice (author)
ISBN: 9780743992268

Do you have healthy eating habits? Learn the importance of portion control and eating healthy foods. This book introduces readers to the different food groups and the appropriate quantities of each. Important vocabulary related to food and health is also provided.

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STEM Jobs in Food and Nutrition
Jane Katirgis (author)
ISBN: 9781627179393

What great STEM job may be waiting for you? How about a job in food and nutrition? Have you ever looked at your dinner and thought about all the people who helped get it to your table? Learn all about food chemists, dieticians, and the farmers who grow the food we eat. How and what animals eat to ensure our meat is healthy, how fertilizers play a part in the safety of our fruits and vegetables, and how what you eat plays an important role in your health. So, count your calories and read along to find out all about this exciting STEM career! This book will allow students to understand how systems may interact with other systems; they may have sub-systems and be a part of larger complex systems.

Other Resources

Take the Common Core Outdoors                                                                             http://hepg.org/hel-home/issues/28_6/helarticle/take-the-common-core-outdoors_554

Lesson plans for math, language arts, science, and social studies as well as evaluation tools  http://collaboratingclassrooms.ath.cx/?garden=/nutrition&section=curriculum

Team Nutrition MyPlate campaign from the USDA featuring posters, songs and more!  http://www.fns.usda.gov/tn/myplate

Nutrition in the Garden Workbook (Douglas County, NE)

http://www.douglascountyne.gov/gardens/images/stories/Nutrition%20in%20the%20Garden%20Workbook.pdf  

It’s a Laughing Matter

Pupils In Class Using Digital Tablet With Teacher

Knock–Knock–Who’s There? Orange.  Orange who?  Orange you glad you’ve heard this joke before.

Higher level thinking skills can be developed through exposure to jokes and riddles.  If you haven’t considered them as a teaching tool, you may want to start if your students meet the following criteria.

Prior skills needed to “get” the jokes

  1. Understanding and mastery of spoken or written language
  2. Significant background knowledge for the joke

Classroom Ideas

  • Hang “funny” posters in your classroom
  • Have a riddle or joke of the day
  • Allow students to bring in their own jokes or riddles
  • Allow students to create their own jokes and riddles and share them
  • Read the comics section of the paper
  • Find age appropriate resources

Big Universe Resources

Screen Shot 2015-04-12 at 6.59.01 PMGuess Again!

Christy Hale (author), Christy Hale (illustrator)   SBN: 9780874837308

This is one of my favorite resources that I have used with my students.  From the publisher, “this lyrical picture book of 20 clever riddles challenges young readers to use their imagination to solve the word and picture puzzles.”

Screen Shot 2015-04-12 at 7.03.25 PMHappy Birthday to Whooo?

Doris Fisher (author), Lisa Downey (illustrator)   ISBN: 9781607180104

From the publisher, “Babies come in all shapes and sizes and are welcomed into all kinds of families. This clever book of baby announcement riddles will have children giggling as they use the various text and illustrated clues to guess what baby was just born. The riddles introduce the life cycle of 12 different animals.The “For Creative Minds” section was vetted for accuracy by educators at the Houston Zoo and includes an “It’s a Numbers Game” activity, information on animal families, fun facts about the 12 animals in the riddles, and a “Design a Birth Announcement” craft for a new pet or sibling.”

Screen Shot 2015-04-12 at 7.04.56 PMGrin and Bear It

Leo Landry (author), Leo Landry (illustrator)   ISBN: 9781570917455

From the publisher, “Bear dreams of becoming a comedian. His jokes are unbearably funny, and he wants nothing more than to make his friends laugh. But Bear has a problem. He has stage fright. When Emmy, the comic hummingbird, discovers Bear’s jokes, Bear learns that there’s more than one way to achieve your dream. Told in seven short chapters.”

You don’t need to be a stand-up comedian to get a laugh out of your students.  When you get a chuckle from a student, just remember they are using higher level thinking to “get” the joke!

 

Interactive Notebooks For Learning

All About Interactive Notebooks For Learning

An interactive notebook is a personalized, student-created textbook and study tool. It is an interactive, hands-on learning project that requires engagement and critical thinking.

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Benefits of Using an Interactive Notebook

  • Engages the learner
  • Provides scaffolding for the learner
  • Excellent for diverse leaners (EL, SEL, Special Education, etc.)
  • A resource for students, parents and teachers
  • A visual guide for learners
  • Excellent introduction and review of the Common Core State Standards
  • Reinforces academic skills

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The teacher and student add each topic to the table of contents page, when they create the information in their interactive notebook. The first few pages of the notebook should be left blank for the table of contents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pictured are some examples of pages from an interactive notebook.

interactivenotebooktoimproveCCSSwritingPhotos taken by K. Beaudry with interactive notebook materials purchased from https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Lovin-Lit

Why use interactive notebooks?

  • Hands-on learning is involved
  • Art is calming and a high interest activity for students
  • Students enjoy creating things
  • Pupils take ownership of their work and the notebook they create
  • Parents and guardians can view work and see what the students are learning in school
  • Students use hands-on skills to develop academic assignments that are based on the Common Core State Standards

Examples of Items That Could Be Included In The Interactive Notebook

  • Completed graphic organizers
  • Flapbooks
  • Foldables
  • Flipbooks
  • Rewriting of notes into one’s own words and/or with illustrations and examples
  • Brainstorming
  • Mnemonic devices
  • Songs, poems, raps
  • Journal entries
  • Novel reflections
  • Informative character illustrations
  • Informative setting illustrations
  • Cause & effect flow charts
  • Color coding of exemplars (to increase student’s understanding)
  • Plot timelines and diagrams

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Supplies Needed For An Interactive Notebook

  • Spiral notebook, composition notebook or construction paper
  • A pencil box of supplies that includes: scissors, glue, colored pencils or crayons

An interactive notebook is a captivating learning tool that can be used in multiple subject areas. It is appropriate for elementary, middle and high school.

Screen Shot 2015-04-12 at 9.25.57 AMPictured below is an example of an exemplar that is color coded by the student to increase the student’s comprehension of the information.

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Interactive Notebooks and Books

Students can reading colorful and engaging titles that can assist in learning the key standards and concepts. They can document new learning in their Interactive Notebooks. These books offer a great opportunity to enrich student’s vocabulary and content knowledge. Big Universe offers thousands of titles in many different languages on a multitude of topics. Find texts in multiple genres as well as teacher resource guides on the Big Universe website.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Art of Persuasion: Teaching Ethos, Pathos and Logos

Rhetoric is the art of persuasion.

The goal of persuasion is to change others’ point of view or to move others to take action.

Using logos, ethos, and pathos, you can master the art of persuasion. Through language and writing, you may be able to change the point of view of others! Writers, speech writers, screenwriters and advertisers use this technique daily.

What is logos, ethos, and pathos?

Logos = Logic

Ethos = Ethics, Image

Pathos = Emotions and Passion

Logos is an argument based on facts, evidence and reason. Using logos means appealing to the readers’ sense of what is logical.

Ethos is an argument based on character. Utilizing ethos means the writer or speaker appeals to the audience’s sense of ethical behavior. The writer or speaker presents him or herself to the audience as credible, trustworthy, honest and ethical.

Pathos is an argument based on feelings. Integrating pathos means appealing to readers’ emotions and feelings.

Writers can incorporate these elements into their argument writing pieces. They can persuade their audience using words, phrases, photos, pictures, and videos.

Resources To Help Educators Teach Persuasion 

Students will love to read these colorful and engaging titles. These title that educate the reader about persuasion. These books offer a great opportunity to enrich student’s vocabulary and content knowledge. Educators can utilize the teacher’s guides to assist in planning.  Big Universe offers thousands of titles in many different languages on a multitude of topics. Find these informational and engaging texts on the Big Universe website.

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Screen Shot 2015-04-06 at 9.10.16 PMIn a Flash

The first flash mob Ian puts together himself is a sixty-plus person, four-minute pillow fight in a department store. His friend Oswald is thrilled with the event, but Julia, the one Ian really wants to impress, is still convinced that flash mobs are stupid. While Ian tries to prove Julia wrong by initiating flash mobs with political impact, Julia is busy waging war with the strict new principal at school. When Julia goes too far and gets herself suspended, Ian sees an opportunity for a relevant and persuasive flash mob.

 

 

 

Sojourner Truth: Speaking Up for Freedom

Sojourner Truth lived a truly remarkable life. She had the ear of President Abraham Lincoln and fellow abolitionists Frederick Douglass, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and William Lloyd Garrison. One of the most persuasive and influential activists of her day, Truth was also an effective recruiter of African Americans into the Union army during the Civil War.

A pinch of math, a splash of history and a touch of language arts: Interdisciplinary Learning in the Classroom

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Humans naturally categorize the world. It is how we know what is food and what is not. This idea of sorting the world using selected criteria (ie same, different, large, small) carries over into the educational system resulting in students being taught through the methodology of subjects.  Curriculum, learning standards, textbooks, grades,and even the school day have been formatted into categories that force learning into a fragmented and jigsaw like mosaic of subjects that rarely overlap in any meaningful way and certainly do not reflect the multi-tasking, cross-disciplinary demands of life.

Interdisciplinary learning removes subjects from the daily schedule and instead replaces them with topics. Topics provide a platform that allow subjects to be combined in meaningful relationships. These relationships provide context that is missing when subjects are taught separately. In fact Allen Repko, Director of the Interdisciplinary Studies Program for the School of Urban and Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Arlington identified four cognitive abilities that are nurtured by using this approach in the classroom.

  1. Perspective-Taking Technique – understanding and incorporating multiple viewpoints
  2. Development of Structural Knowledge -combining facts with process-based inquiry to gain more complete understanding
  3. Integration of conflicting insights from alternative disciplines – using alternative and conflicting ideas and/or processes to creatively and methodically explore the issue rather than looking at it through a single lens
  4. Interdisciplinary Understanding -seeing and understanding how different approaches to a problem effect each other

In order to make learning more connected and in fact more like real life. Interdisciplinary learning was recently adopted as the standard method in Finland and has made The Evergreen State College with its focus on “learning communities” one of the most recognized and successful post secondary institutions in the United States. The introduction of Common Core standards has made interdisciplinary teaching even more important. Common Core provides teachers a framework that encourages learning take place in an interdisciplinary environment.

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Three ways to bring interdisciplinary learning into the classroom (or even the entire school)

1) Team/Co-teach: Team up with teachers across disciplines to create meaningful lessons that easily cross subjects. Team-teaching is also noted as a key to success in integrating Common Core standards.

2) Use “backward design” when planning.  Plan unit objectives and methods of assessment first and then consider what lessons will help students reach those goals

3) Use student’s questions and perspectives on a topic when planning lessons.  Not only does this engage students more in learning, it also helps to bring new ideas and ways of thinking into the lessons, encourages students to employ skills from a variety of disciplines as well as using critical thinking skills.

Related Big Universe blog posts

Exploring African-American History through Literature http://blog.biguniverse.com/2015/01/31/using-a-literary-genre-studies-unit-to-explore-african-american-history-and-culture/

Teaching and the 21st century skills                             http://blog.biguniverse.com/2015/03/28/teaching-and-the-21st-century-skills/

Connecting Math to the Real World                                                             http://blog.biguniverse.com/?s=language+math

Other resources

Introduction to Interdisciplinary Instruction: Chapter 1 http://ptgmedia.pearsoncmg.com/images/9780137137084/downloads/Wood_Ch1_IntroductiontoInterdisciplinaryInstruction.pdf.

Pedagogy in Action – the SERC portal for educators: http://serc.carleton.edu/sp/library/interdisciplinary/why.html

Test Taking Tips and Strategies For Success

BigTest

Tests in life are a reality. Starting at a young age, educators and parents can teach students valuable strategies that can help them to master the test.

Get Sleep

People of all ages need to be well rested prior to taking a test or exam. Being tired increases the chances of making errors on the exam. Teach students to go to bed early and get some rest.

Practice The Test Format

Being familiar with the testing format increases test scores and creates positive test outcomes. Teachers can practice questions in a format that is similar to the way the students will be tested.

For more information and practice test questions, visit the Smarter Balanced website. Smarter Balanced Test Information provides detailed information and sample questions.

Know The Key Vocabulary

Well prepared students are familiar with the the words that they will encounter on the test. Teaching students the most common words and phrases that are on the test, is of great benefit to them, and their test scores!

  • alternate

occurring or succeeding by terms

  • argument

a reason for or against something

  • assess

to determine the importance, size, or value of

  • claim

to state as a fact

  • clarify

to make or become more readily understandable, clear

  • cohesion

the action of sticking together tightly

  • connect

explain how ideas in a selection are similar/links to other texts and the real world

  • context clues

words around an unknown word that help you figure out that word’s meaning

  • credible

deserving to be believed

  • evidence

something that furnishes proof

  • formal

something distinguished

  • opposing

to place over or against something for contrast

  • relevant

relation to the matter at hand

  • sufficient

enough to meet the needs of a situation

  • sound

free from flaw, defect, or decay

Resources To Help Educators Prepare For Standardized Testing

Students will love to read these colorful and engaging titles. These books offer a great opportunity to enrich student’s vocabulary and content knowledge. Educators can utilize the teacher’s guides to assist in planning.  Big Universe offers thousands of titles in many different languages on a multitude of topics. Find these informational and engaging texts on the Big Universe website.

The Big Test
BigTest by Julie Danneberg (author), Judy Love (illustrator) (illustrator)       © 2011
ISBN: 9781580893619   AR: Book Level 3.1  / Quiz 144023

Mrs. Hartwell is preparing her class to take the Big Test. Knowing they have studied and are well-prepared, she helps the students practice how to sit quietly, fill in the bubbles, and follow the directions. She even instructs them on proper morning-of-the-test nutrition. As her students grow increasingly anxious about the Big Test, Mrs. Hartwell realizes she has to teach the most valuable test-taking skill of all: learning to relax!

 

TestPrep1Standardized Test Prep 1
by Frishman Co. (author)       © 2003
ISBN: 9781602915084

The reproducible activities in this series prepare students to take assessments in reading, language arts, math, science, and social studies. The exercises have tips on how to approach various types of problems and provide step-by-step examples, helping the anxious test-taker gain confidence. Easier activities in the first title lead to more challenging activities in the second. The Enhanced eBook edition available gives you the freedom to cut and paste any portion of the text into your own document; to project the eBook contents on a whiteboard; and more! Topics Include: multiple meaning words, prefixes, main idea, predicting outcomes, area, volume, mass, ecosystems, energy, and more…

 

Standardized Test Prep 2
by Frishman Co. (author)       © 2003
ISBN: 9781602915091TestPrep2

The reproducible activities in this series prepare students to take assessments in reading, language arts, math, science, and social studies. The exercises have tips on how to approach various types of problems and provide step-by-step examples, helping the anxious test-taker gain confidence. Easier activities in the first title lead to more challenging activities in the second. The Enhanced eBook edition available gives you the freedom to cut and paste any portion of the text into your own document; to project the eBook contents on a whiteboard; and more! Topics Include: using context clues, plot summary, making inferences, combining sentences, correcting fragments, estimation, operations, and more…

 

 

April is School Library Month

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As a school librarian, I absolutely love libraries. I guess it’s my job to love and support them. However, not everyone is aware of the untapped resources available to them for free.  Your tax dollars go towards funding your local library. So in a sense, you own part of the library. What is available to you?

Tax Information Most people are unaware they can go to the library for tax help. Users can receive additional tax information and find FREE resources that will prepare your taxes.

Public Meeting Places If you are not selling products, sign up to use a conference room or smaller study rooms. They will typically have technology available for you to use.

Free Wi-fi We have all gone to the local coffee house and connected. But they have a catch, buy something first. With a public library there is not an alternative motives. I guess there is, come to the library.

Latest Media Most libraries will have subscription services available to you. You can download the latest audiobook and other media. Resources such as Big Universe.com have increased accessibility to ebooks, reading and writing lesson plans, and professional development resources.

Programming The library offers free classes. Too often this is seen as story time. The offerings are actually quite extensive from young children to adults. My son took a computer game design class. Sometimes these types of classes are offered once a month or weekly depending on the type of class.

Resources Sit back and view all the materials available to you. If you don’t love to read, find what you do like. Cookbooks, crafting, magazines are also great ways things to explore.

Outreach If you don’t live close to a library, you can still take advantage of the resources. Bookmobiles and inter-library loans are just a beginning.

Big Universe resources to use during National Library Week-April 12-18, 2015 

For younger students

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 10.47.52 PM  Librarians

Cari Meister   ISBN: 9781624960321

From the publisher, “This photo-illustrated book for early readers gives examples of different things librarians do, such as ordering materials, helping patrons find information, and more.”

For intermediate students

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 10.40.04 PMLibrarians Then and Now

Roben Alarcon   ISBN: 743993764

From the publisher, “Librarians lend and take care of books. Many years ago, the job of a librarian was simpler because librarians only took care of a few books and libraries were small. Most libraries today contain many books, magazines, computers, and other media equipment. Librarians today help people find information and show them new ways to find it.”

For older students

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 10.45.06 PMLibrary Book Mystery

Eleanor Robins (author)  ISBN: 9781612471327

From the publisher, “Carter High is a typical high school. The students of Carter attend classes, participate in sports and drama, cram for exams, and go on field trips. Topics are involving and pertinent to young adult readers but with a twist of mystery. In just 48-pages, even your struggling readers can easily finish these novels! Competitiveness becomes something more sinister as Lin and Chandra compete for the best grade on their science papers. Did Lin lose her library book or did someone take it? Can Willow help Lin find her library book in time to complete her paper?”

 

 

 

Perfect Presentation: Publishing Ideas

Publishing and Making Work Public When Writing In School

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Many writers consider publishing the best part of the writing process. When publishing creativity and originality are key. The content is presented best when it is packaged well, just like a shiny new present.

How To Present The Final Copy

  • Write or type it
  • Use your best handwriting or printing, if you write it
  • Write it on special paper (if possible)
  • Make a book
  • Include illustrations, pictures, photos, magazine cut-outs
  • Utilize technology for presentations, blogs, online publishing programs

Making Work Public 

Sharing It With Others

Students can share their work with others and the community:

  • School offices can post students’ writing
  • Kids can enter writing contests (with parent/guardian permission)
  • Writers can create books that they can share with their families and friends
  • Students can send their written opinion to the local newspaper (with parent permission)
  • Students can send their reviews of the food at a restaurant to the restaurant owner (with parent/guardian permission)
  • Write letters to Politicians, Lawmakers, City Council, the Mayor (with parent/guardian permission)
  • Technology can make students’ work public (with parent/guardian permission)
  • Students can create books. Students can share their opinions, arguments and original artwork with others.

Students can write about anything! A great place to start is to have them write about what they are interested in.

Writing Ideas

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Some ideas for writing:

  • Favorites (games, places, animals)
  • Likes (food, theme parks, recipes, clothes, pets, video games)
  • Dislikes (a horrible day)
  • New (national, word, classroom, and family news)
  • History (in the making, events, places, traditions)
  • Reviews (books, movies, websites, food, restaurants, places)
  • Experiences (special days, birthdays, holidays)
  • People (friends, biographies, autobiographies)

Use Online Writing Programs To Publish Writing

Want student engagement and excitement? Utilize an online publishing program. Big Universe offers an award winning writing program that inspiring writers of all ages love!

Screen Shot 2015-04-01 at 7.52.23 PMWant to create and publish books online?

 

 

 

The Writing Process Made Easy

Student Friendly Language For The Writing Process

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The Common Core State Standards require students to: Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach. Explicitly teaching students the steps of the writing process builds better writers.

The Phases of The Writing Process 

Brainstorm-Think about what you are going to write

Plan Ahead

Write your ideas down

  • On a web
  • In a list
  • On paper
  • Use graphic organizers to organize information
  • Draw pictures and use illustrations

Drafting

  • Put your thoughts into sentences and write your first draft – your Sloppy Copy
  • The premise of drafting is to get ideas down, don’t worry about perfection
  • Just get the ideas down on paper
  • Don’t worry about errors, now is just the ideology creation
  • Research shows it is best to write in a quiet environment (classical music in the background is very calming)
  • It is sometimes helpful to skip lines in the drafting phase (later the writer can edit and revise using the empty lines)

Revising

Read your first draft and think about how to make it better

  • Avoid word redundancy (don’t use the same words over and over)
  • Make sure the writing makes sense
  • Check for a strong introduction
  • Is the writing in an order that that the reader can understand?

Do you need to:

Add a title?

Change some sentences?

Delete some words or sentences?

Add some details?

Change some words?

Add descriptive words, make the written work come alive!

 Key Points About Revising and Editing

  • Rewriting is key during this part of the process. Let students know it is okay to change things. We are using this time to improve our written piece.
  • Revising and editing are not the same thing. Revise first, then edit. (Please see the information to follow about revising and editing)
  • It is helpful to use the proofreader’s mark when revising and editing.
  • Students benefit from having their own copy of the proofreader’s marks.
  • Educators should provide students with explicit instruction in editing and using the proofreader’s marks.

Editing

In the writing piece, check for and correct:

  • Grammar
  • Punctuation
  • Subject/verb agreement
  • Spelling
  • Capitalization
  • Sentence fragments
  • Correct spacing

Professional writers edit their work prior to sending it to being published. Teaching kids how to edit their work prior to publishing it leads to academic success. In order to prepare students for college and career readiness, we must teach students how to edit their own work.

Big Universe has a detailed blog about publishing. Please visit Publishing Ideas.

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Resources From The Common Core State Standards

  • The Common Core State Standards explains the components of writing under the heading Writing.

http://www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/W/introduction/ (grades K-5)

http://www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/W/introduction-for-6-12/ (grades 6-12)