Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Teaching Writing

Remember how I said teaching generalizations scares me? You know something else that can be added to that list? Teaching writing! I teaching Reading/Language Arts/Spelling and I hate to admit it, but writing gets pushed back A LOT! There just isn't enough time to teach everything, but writing is super important! I decided to use Presidents Day as the perfect excuse to start writing our informational essays and I thought I'd share the process with y'all! 

I'm going to divide this series of posts into 5 different parts, using the 5 steps of writing as a guide. I'm teaching my kids about this process using my writing posters. 

You can find these posters here 
(They are also included in the Presidential Research Unit)

This week, we started our Presidential Research Project:

On Monday, we each randomly chose a president to write our informational essay on. We used the site to gather information about our president. I made sure that we only used this site to ensure the content would be appropriate (lots of other sites included the sexual relations issue with Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky and I wanted to steer clear of that!** This site does mention the impeachment part, but just says he lied about something. No details!) 

I created this info sheet to record facts about each president.

Once everyone completed this sheet, they grab a copy of the fun facts page and used the same site to find three fun facts about their president and draw a portrait

Once we had gathered all our information, it was time to organize it! We used several graphic organizers to help with this step (lots of my kids couldn't believe all of this was in step 1! I told them it was a long process!)

By this point, students are very familiar with their topic (in this case, their president) and have their info organized. Writing the 1st draft should now be easy! We'll start that part Friday! :)

You can find all the printable mentioned in this post here. :)
Happy hump day, y'all! 


  1. Do you get to teach every subject everyday? (Reading, grammar, spelling, writing) I'm finding it hard to get all that done in 90 minutes. Do you split your days focusing on different subjects?

    1. Hey Ashley! I *usually* focus on comprehension and vocabulary on Monday and Tuesdays and grammar on Wednesdays. I use warm ups each day to review the skills so they aren't forgetting what we've covered. I give spelling words each week and test on them, but we don't do anything with them other than the practice book page or to use them in our writing. I don't teach the spelling pattern. I blogged about what a typical day/week looks like for me. I'll link them below. I only have 70 minutes with each class so time is always an issue! Hope this helps! :)

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