writing

Redwood Writing Project mentor TC Rosie Slentz gives a TEDx Youth talk about fostering a sense of wonder for students.  Hikes to the forest and stream inspire lessons for her 5th grade writer's workshop and prompt journal entries.
                 This lesson takes about 45-60 minutes to complete, and it has three parts: listening, listing, and writing.  The objective is to generate the first draft of a sharp and vivid vignette.   Writing about parents can be difficult for teenagers.  Students don’t know whether they should mythologize mom and dad with sugary platitudes or murder them in their sleep.  Whether or not a...
  While all writing draws on the imagination and memory of the writer, the personal narrative and memoir are considered by my students to be exclusively “true” stories.  Whatever. I’m from the “all stories are true” camp and try to discourage dogmatic adherence to genre rules. However, from their self-reflections, I discovered that most of my students loath the idea of writing stories, either...
I am not a fan of grades.  “But we are,” my students whine, asking me daily to separate the sheep from the goats on a 100 point scale.  “So are our parents and those colleges out there.” In a world of standardized testing, college admission requirements, and GPA wars, I am stuck with awarding grades. However, a difficult question for most creative writing teachers is: How do I “grade” a...
A_walk_on_the_other_side_by_gilad (1).jpg I'd like to invite you all in to a challenge that I've help develop with an awesome group of researchers. In this challenge, we will explore the use of digital texts and tools as a means to connect, collaborate, and share. This social media experiment first started as a outline for future research that Leanne Drapeau,  Greg...
One of the mainstays of my creative writing classroom is poetry transcription, a writing exercise I learned from Rob Lockhart, a teacher with the Boyd County school system.  I learned PT from Rob in 2004 during the Morehead Writing Project Summer Institute and have used it with every grade, class, and ability level since. In linguistics, transcription is the act of rendering spoken language into...
mr__photographer_3d_by_raphis-d4p94b5.jpg TL;DR version: This post is the second in a series of posts in which I reflect on events and discussions from #LRA13 in Dallas, TX. This post focuses on the changing nature of writing, multimediating, and online spaces.I've been very much interested in "writing" and how it's changed while using digital texts and tools. I...
Mitch Resnick, as the head of the Lifelong Kindergarten group at the MIT Media Lab,  talks about kids not just learning to code but about coding to learn. At this year's NWP Annual Meeting in Boston, Mitch and his colleague Karen Brennan from ScratchEd, worked with a group of us to dive into Scratch and to play with the idea of coding to write and coding to learn. Today is the first day of an...
This is cross-posted from my personal blog: www.thinkingthroughmylens.wordpress.com In addition to learning about circuits in the Hacking Your Notebook session, that I described here, at the NWP Annual Meeting in Boston, I also had the opportunity to participate in a three-hour workshop about e-textiles where we made puppets.  This session also involved the basics of circuitry and using a small...
This is cross-posted from my personal blog: www.thinkingthroughmylens.wordpress.com In my last blog post (here) I touched on that idea of work and play and the way that they are often interconnected in the way I experience my life and work.  And as I am thinking through some of my conference experiences, I see the blurriness…and maybe even more than that, the overlap of work and play. When one of...

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