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Newsflash

September 23, 2010

In light of our abysmal test scores from last year, I’ve decided to shake things up drastically.

Okay….not really that drastically.  But I’m still looking for new and different ways to do just about everything I’ve done in the past.

With that comes a full-on implementation of a Writer’s Workshop, as opposed to the half-hearted, weakly-supported “writing time” I used to pretend was a “workshop format”.  Unfortunately, my district provides exactly zero in the way of support for a WW format for middle school teachers.  I have gathered so much information over the past couple of months by interrogating colleagues, pouring over blogs, sifting through articles/books from college, and attending any training I can find that might be remotely related to writing.

We began Writer’s Workshop last week with an introduction to the WW structure and a brief writing time.  After 5 days of this, the kids have produced more writing for me in the past week than many of them did in a quarter of last year!  They are little thinking, listing, sketching, brainstorming, complete-sentence writing monsters.

Though we have yet to progress beyond the pre-writing stage of the process, I am quite pleased with their progress (with that statement, I’ve now officially jinxed myself and their progress).  In fact, I can’t recall the last time I was this proud of something they have done.

NEWSFLASH:  THIS IS WORKING.  Hallelujah!

I feel need to send out a BIG thank you to everyone for helping me gather the information to set this up and get it off the ground.  So many people I’ve never even met aided my planning by putting their own experiences and expertise online.  I’m still leaning on you, seeing that it’s only the fourth week of school and we have something like 29 or so more to go…

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