Joy Writing (and Reading too!)

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#sol17- November 7, 2017

My afterschool activity has morphed this year and it has been so fun to watch it evolve. For the last few years, I have offered an ASA I call “Book Love”. The premise is that we start with a read aloud and/or some book trailers and then we read or write (or both). Usually, most of the students have read.

This year I have 18 students from Grade 2-5, 12 boys and 6 girls. Six of those students were in my homeroom last year (and one of them said sweetly today, “I really miss this room!”). This year more of the students than ever before are choosing to write – the numbers being more or less even. What I notice is that many of the boys are enjoying writing collaboratively- either planning a series together and writing separately, or choosing an idea and each writing their own spin. What I also notice is that some of these students really want to share their writing (and sadly today we did not have time for this in the end- that will be corrected next time). I love listening to them as they write- talking about the influences on their writing (“You know, just like in the book…”) or what they will write next. There are lots of great graphic novels being created and many other forms as well! One little girl (who is a prolific writer) spent the entire hour without putting a word on the page once she made her book, but she was busy the whole time, watching others, engaging in the conversations, and thinking.

Then there are the readers, often sprawled out on the floor, calling out thoughts as they come (“Why is this line, ‘I am your father’ so well known?”, “Do you have the most recent one in this series?” “Did you get Dog Man back yet from whoever had it?” ). A few of the fourth grade boys take turns having “The Pigeon” sit by them as they read.

I love this no stress hour each week where we can come together as readers and writers and just do what we want! It is easy to see the joy.

 

 

*** Zhi Hong and the emergency room.

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7 thoughts on “Joy Writing (and Reading too!)

  1. glenda funk

    This is a lovely post that shows what our classrooms should always be like: full of the love of books.

    Are you familiar w/ Penny Kittle’s book “Book Love” and the Book Love foundation?

    Reply
  2. dmsherriff

    This is an after school activity that I want to be part of! Way to go! I can feel the energy these writers have – individually and collectively! Keep writing about this! I’d love to see pictures and hear more on your observations! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  3. Jennifer Laffin

    This is a great activity! I love that you give students time to pursue their passions related to literacy. Great job listening in, by the way. Priceless conversations are happening all around you!

    Reply
  4. franmcveigh

    Me, too! Put me on the visit list. (Then I will need the globe!) Have you thought about flipgrid as a way to share beyond when you are all together? Trying to think of options!

    Reply

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