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August Institute: Writing Institute 2014-15 Day 2

August Institute: Writing Institute

Day 2 

        I'm here at Teachers' College Reading and Writing Project! It's Day 2.

Writing to Intensify Reading: From Entries to Composition Books to Essays        Kate Roberts

Managing post-it annotations
-You want to keep the post-its that represent the best work.  Pick a day to download the best post-its into their readers' notebooks.  Pick a number.  "Pick your six best post its for the week.  Put them into your notebook." "Pick the three post-its that most closely represent the work of this week."- helps to tether them to the work of the classroom.  "Pick three you're proud of. Two you're wondering about. One you really need help on."
-"Pick four that show _______ comprehension strategies."

Criteria for picking post-its:
  • Best #
  • The # that reflect the unit
  • Best and worst
  • A day in the life of a post -it (picking a day of post-its)
  • A strategy
  • A journey of thought in the book -where an idea began and where/how it moved
  • Talk post-its- spurred thinking/conversation
How to motivate more post-its
  • Teach kids when to stop. (Notice and Note, Beers and Probst)
  • Allow students to mark important spots and then go back and think/talk/write       Marking for significance (!, ?, * etc.) - coding      What codes can you think of that might work for you/the lit you're reading.        ! -Big Idea ?-Question/Wonder  *-aha  circle,square-pattern  icons of depth and complexity  heart-emotions
  • Setting a number collectively
  • Set a purpose >>>talk >>>entries >>>Review on GoodReads, Blogs, Edmodo, Movie trailer  >>celebrate -post-it star chart, post-it party
Find a way to use the post-its in a purposeful manner in tour Reader's Workshop.

Reader's Notebook Entries

How do we get entries to generate more thinking/deeper thinking?  "Start off with a post-it and push your thinking.  Write long."  Do they end up with a thought better than they started with?

Foundation lesson for writing entries 
Thought prompts /sentence starters help kids pause and push their thinking
  • This makes me think...
  • ___ is like ____ but also like _____
  • Or maybe
  • At first I thought___ but now I think ____
  • On the other hand ....
  • Another way of saying this is ....
  • This makes me realize ....
  • The theme of ____ is similar to ____ because ______
Thought prompt model lesson:
Don't expect kids to just be able to write. Demonstrate the thinking behind using the thought prompt. Model how to use the thought prompts/ use a think aloud.  Start with a statement and have kids offer a thought prompt to you.  Model the thinking behind it.  Then do a different thought process.
"Rosaura is prideful. Which way should I go?" "This makes me think..." I could go with motivation, explanation, etc. "Rosaura is prideful.  This makes me think it's a porcupine protect herself."  "I realize"  "I could do character or the world. I realize that when people act egotistical, they might be scared."  "or maybe" "Or maybe she does change because she goes from ego to rage." BOOM!

Then have kids talk!!  After you model, have kids try it out!!

Thought prompts for an informational unit:
This helps me understand _____
I never knew ____
I used to think _____ but now I know _____
I agree/disagree with _____ because ______
Now I'm wondering about _______
____ is similar/dissimilar to ____ because ______
I can't believe that ______
The author's purpose for writing this is _____
The text says ____and makes me think _____
This text makes me feel _____ because _____
The author chose the word ____ because _____

What is worth writing long about?
The whole idea is to push their thinking. Some post-its are worth writing long about, others not so much.  Some are already good- you don't need to write long.  Which do you have more thoughts about?
  • Ideas that feel like judgments
  • Ideas that feel too simple (trait, emotion etc.)
  • The start of a theory
  • Questions that won't be answered in the text
  • Anything that hunts at a theme or Big Idea
  • Debate questions
  • Different perspectives they're not familiar with
  • Personal connections
  • Tentative language/insecure entries
Notebook entries
  • Infographic pages -graphic organizers, thinking maps, theme web, power map, internal/external pressures
  • Writing long with post-its

Homework: write an entry using some thought prompts, a long jot and make an infographic page
The One and Only Ivan by Katherine PattersonWhy would it be difficult for a gorilla?"I Wonder"  I wonder where he lives that makes life difficult?"The text says____ which makes me think _____"  The text says the freeway ape which makes me think he lives near people so it's not in a forest"The author chose the word ____ because _____" The author chose the words waste, toss, rot because she really want to get the idea across of humans as wasteful.Entry:
The author chose the words waste, toss, rot because she really want to get the idea across of humans as wasteful. When I looked up wasteful, I found " using or expending something of value carelessly, " I think tat may be a theme in this book. Humans as careless. I think humans think they are taking care of the earth. You know, using reusable bags and recycling but if we looked at it from the perspective of the animals, they might find us extremely careless.  Some synonyms for careless: inattentive, incautious, remiss, negligent and cavalier. I wonder what Ivan has gone through in his life and what he's seen.  What have we done to them?

Infographic made with piktochart (free education account).  Lit response to The One and Only Ivan.

Conferring to move kids and generate curriculum               Carl Anderson

     First two teachers role-played being a teacher and student conferring. Then we role played at our desks.

     Carl recommends Randy Bomer -Building Adolescent Literacy in Today's English Classrooms to find info about notebooks and rubrics.

     As you confer with kids, it will become second nature.  BUT you need to be doing it right as "practice makes permanent" not "practice makes perfect".
     What are you looking for?  What lenses will you be using?  What do you value and why?
What do we want students to learn to do as writers?
  • Initiate writing -write because it's meaningful/purpose and audience, who do we want to reach?
  • Write well -they need to learn to write competently to be able to communicate well
  • Develop a writing process that works for them -the child should have whatever works for them
What does initiative mean?
  • Purpose
  • Audience
What does it mean to write well? Qualities of writing (similar to 6 traits).
Experienced writers:
  • Communicate meaning
  • Structure their writing
  • Write with detail
  • Give their writing voice
  • Use conventions

Aspects of process
  • Rehearsal
  • Drafting
  • Revising
  • Editing
  • Publishing
It's all about focus and elaboration!

       To help with focus: Kids need to answer "What am I trying to say here?" before they even start their draft.

Tomorrow: patterns and tertiary questions.  Teaching points.
No Homework!

Using Technology to Boost Student Engagement

Cornelius Minor

Mindset:  Remember you are not teaching technology- simply using it as a tool The tool we are using to communicate ideas.

What place does it have in my classroom?  Tech is anything that helps us do our work better - stuff we use to create content.  Kids need to learn to be content creators.  Your economic behavior is set in your teenage years: you are either a consumer (use it) or producer (creators).  Consumers make less than producers.  What are you?
  1. Need a mentor, preferably a kid.  You need 7 minutes every week. Become familiar with your mentors tools.
  2. Make sure you have a smart phone.  You are not literate without one. Have an email outside of school (gmail). You need a Dropbox account- cloud based storage solution, it's like renting a storage unit.   Google drive- need an gmail account.  Twitter- his current favorite, your PLN helps you grow!

Need Mentor Texts!  Where can I get them?
  1. Overdrive Media Console- connects to your local library, they download to your computer, you acquire texts for a couple weeks
  2. Wattpad -If you read a book, you have to write a review.  It's not books that are already published.  Can use it to upload work and can search for free.
  3. Genius Scan- download to smart phone $5.99  Turns camera on phone into a scanner.  Allows you to take a pic and save as a pdf. Really useful for Mentor Texts.
Tech squad!
  1. A bossy girl     CEO
  2. Expert at something    Doesn't matter in what! That means he's an organic researcher
  3. Early bird    Super responsible
  4. Class Diplomat
OK Tech squad, I need to make a digital library.  You need to stockpile texts.  What do you like to read? What web sites do you use to read about them?  Go to the web sites with the kids and bookmark the pages.  #3, your job is to cruise the sites and copy and paste into Word. #1, your job is to take the formatting and puts it into the appropriate folder in Dropbox or Google.  

In grades 4-8, pleasing the teacher no longer matters BUT social needs are big. They want to please peers.  What tools can I use?
  1. Edublogs are very secure.  Can also use Wordpress, can add security levels.  Blogger is the most open though.
  2. When students publish three items, they get cards that say: Name, writer   Mrs. Robles' Class,  Blog address
  3. How does the community gather?  Print pictures, web addresses, QR codes and put on bulletin boards in those places.  The kids are famous!
The writing notebook is a construct where ideas live.  Three important ideas:  It doesn't have to be a physical notebook.  How do your ideas come to you?  Where are those ideas going to live?  How are you going to communicate that to me?  Could be Google docs, physical notebooks etc. How is the writing going to get to me?

Feedback:  From the teacher and from peers.  How do we share our work?
  1. Edmodo: Facebook for kids.  Today'   Poll everywhere- wide open to the world.
Google docs - so easy for writing

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