Writing Choices and a Blog Hop Preview!

We can all agree giving our students the power of choice within the classroom is a great motivator.  We give our students plenty of choice when it comes to reading.  But are we giving them enough choice when it comes to writing?

If your answer is “yes”, give yourself a pat on the back!  Students need to be given choice when it comes to writing.  Within my classroom, students are allowed to chose what they are working on during Daily 5,  journal writing, and during down time within the classroom.  I find that in these small moments, true “authorship” begins to take place. 

Tonight I want to share with you a valuable resource that one of our very own blogging friends, Lori Rosenberg, has created.  It’s called the Writing Menu…and it has changed our classroom life over the past few weeks!  Oh. my. word. My students simply cannot get enough of it.  If you have early finishers in your classroom or are looking for something that will help organize and structure the “choice” during Work on Writing time, look no further!  

Using the menu is easy – for you and your kiddos!  I printed and laminated the posters, and hung them on my board with magnets so they can be easily moved around when discussing a particular type of writing:
I needed a way to organize everything and make the writing templates for each menu item easily accessible for kids – and space saving for myself.  If you look closely, I wrote a number in the corner of each menu poster:
Then, I organized a large binder and sorted the templates.  Ta-da! My kids just find the type of writing they want to work on, look at the number, and grab the template out of the binder.  Then they are ready to work!   
The best part? My students haven’t asked me the dreaded question “What do we do when we’re done?!?!?” in over a month.  It has been music to my ears.  They know that during Daily 5 Work on Writing time, or when they complete a task early, they are allowed to stand up by the menu and quietly pick a choice to take back to their seat.  
The power of choice has been wonderful for some of my struggling writers.  This little girl created her own recipe to take home to her mom titled “Sprinkle Cake.” (FYI: You may want to revise the recipe for your own household…it contains a lot of sugar – and apparently, the sprinkles can only come from Walmart.  The other sprinkles will just not do.)
This little girl recently began a nonfiction book titled “All About Soccer.”  She has explained to me that the book will have chapters inside of it, teaching people how to play soccer and why it is fun.
You can visit Lori’s TpT shop and blog by clicking {HERE} and learning more about her Writing Menu.  You will love it! ๐Ÿ™‚
What kind of things do you do in your classroom to add choice to your writing time?  Leave a comment below.  I’d love to hear from you! ๐Ÿ™‚
Before I go tonight, I have linked up with 13 awesome bloggers for the month of February to bring you the 14 Days of For The Love of Teaching FREEBIE Blog Hop!   We hope to make your February planning a little easier – and fun! ๐Ÿ™‚ 
The blog hop will start at Ms. Smarty Pants’ blog on February 1st.  Visit her blog this Friday to download her freebie. Then follow her link for the next day’s freebie!   How *sweet* is that? ๐Ÿ™‚
Happy Learning,

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5 Comments

  1. I won her writing menu in a giveaway and haven't quite introduced all the components yet, but your post gets me excited. I love all her stuff, especially this item! ๐Ÿ™‚

    SArah
    teachingiscolorful.blogspot.com

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