In our classroom, we use the writer’s workshop model! Our writer’s workshop starts with word study or Developmental Spelling Analysis (DSA)!
Word study in our class is a differentiated sorting activity. The ‘staches are sorting words by various features. Some are doing beginning sounds, some are doing blends and some are doing word families. I use the books Words Their Way for our word sorts and the book Word Journeys has the assessment that we use to differentiate our word study.
The reason we start writer’s workshop with word study is that there is a major correlation between using word study (DSA) and writing. Several years ago when the district mandated word study and I implemented it, I saw a massive improvement in the writing of my students. The reason? Word study really hits the sounds and stretching of words which shows up in their writing.
(I’m planning a serious of posts on word study so stay tuned!)
After word study, we move to writer’s workshop. This consists of a mini lesson of about 10 minutes and then the students are writing! Most of our writing time is for the ‘staches to write! As they finish writing, we conference about their writing and work to make their writing better. I conference with about half of my class each day.
For our writing curriculum, we use Writing Through The Year from Deedee Wills and Deanna Jump. These units are amazing for writer’s workshop! They come with everything you need to make writer’s workshop a success. I swear by these units! They definitely get the seal of approval!
After the ‘staches finishing writing, they head back to their centers/workstations/hippopotamuses!
Check out the video and let me know if you have questions!
(This video was filmed with our GoPro camera mounted to the ceiling! I actually filmed the whole day and hope to eventually post the whole video!)
Howdy, I am Mr. Greg. I have been teaching for 11 years. I spent a year teaching fifth grade, two years in second grade and am now in my 9th year in Kindergarten. Kindergarten is my passion and my calling but honestly, that wasn’t how it started. Read the whole story >