Teachable Thursdays

Yay!  It's my first Thursday blog.  That's progress, right?  So, hopefully everything I write ends up making sense.  Today has been a great day, but a lloonngg day.  We have Monday and Tuesday off, so there is a lot to get accomplished before our little break.  When we come back it is the end of the 1st 9 weeks and we have Fall Festival that Friday.  Anyway, so after dinner and a snow cone with my husband, I'm doing a little more work where I watch Grey's Anatomy.  I know, sad, but I am hooked on this show.

Anyway, onto an actual topic.  I took a few pictures of how I teach writing today and drumroll please - I am using my Mac tonight instead of my iPad, so typing is much faster and pictures are definitely available this time.  Below each picture I will give a little info.  I'm also going to try to include a worksheet I created years ago for journal writing.  I don't know about you, but I HATE newsprint handwriting paper.  It's too thin, it has an odd texture, and if you try to erase it always tears.

These are the stickers we are using for our writing activity.  I got them off of Oriental Trading.  I'm including a link to the exact stickers.  I order lots of these every year.  My kids love them!
Oriental Trading
This is a picture of our Graphic Organizer.  We did this on our Activboard.  I do each of the questions in a different color.  This way, if I'm helping one of my kids at their desk, I can tell them they need to work on the red question.

These are two of the ways I teach writing to some of my struggling students.  In the picture on the left, I used a mini dry erase board.  Several of my kids can't copy from the board yet, so this really helps.  I found these boards in sets of 4 at Target in the $1 section.  In the picture on the right, this student sat with me and wrote his story.  This student struggles a lot with handwriting, so after they finished their rough draft, I wrote it with a yellow marker and had him trace it.  I kept the original for his file, but this allowed him to work a little more on his handwriting.  Our occupational therapist told us last year it's best to use a yellow marker so that students can see their writing.  I also have a student that can't write sentences on her own, so I she verbally tells me what she wants to write.  As she tells me, I write it in yellow and then she traces it.  The majority of my class just uses our graphic organizer, but I thought I'd share a few other ways that we differentiate writing in our classroom.

These are examples of two of the rough drafts.  As I go through it, I try my best to always have the student present and talk with them as I'm making marks.  This way, they will understand what they need to change.  They never do the sticker sheets until their final draft is complete.  Also, you may have noticed the clipboards in the pictures.  Every kid in my class has their own clipboard with their name on it.  I love this because it allows us to move to anywhere in the room to work.  Typically, when we write There's only 4 or 5 kids still in their original seats.  I usually pull 4 up to the table with me, move several students to work with my T.A., then the rest work independently at a group of tables or on the floor.

Once our final product is done, I will be sure to post a picture or two.  Hope this was useful :)

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