This week's prompts and ideas in Teachers Write reminded me of the importance of modeling writing for students, so...
This week I'd like to reflect on and share the myriad teaching techniques I'm learning in Kate Messner's Teachers Write PD.
Monday Lesson Plan Ideas
1. Make Mine a Metaphor!
Jo Knowles posted a lovely blog about building and challenged TW participants to
"share a memory of working on a project with someone you love. What was the project? Why were you working on it? Why was it important, or why did it become important? What did you talk about while you worked? What did the materials feel like in your hands? Smell like? Were you physically exhausted? Emotionally? Show us why this memory is important to you."
I wrote about the hope chest I watched my grandfather build for me when I was 11. It was a surprise Christmas gift.
2. I had loads of fun with the noun generator Jody Feldman prompted us with.
Go to the random noun generator: http://www.wordgenerator.net/noun-generator.php
The first word that pops up is yours for the day. You have two choices:
- Brainstorm:Generate a full page of plot ideas with that noun at the center of yourthoughts. Need a boost? Add in a second word.
- Dive in: Let your noun kickstart a piece of writing. The word generator, for example, gave me expansion.
Here's what I wrote with my word, jelly:
“Patina dipped the knife into the jar of plum jelly. She scooped out a clump of purple goo and plopped the jelly onto the dry toast, spreading it to the bread’s crusty corners. She wished telling Tai about the baby were as easy as making toast and jelly. But a baby isn’t bread and the truth isn’t always as easy to spread as jelly on toast.”
3. Having trouble developing characters and/or settings? Rosanne Parry gives a step-by-step- process for developing both in her lesson "Story Hunting." This is definitely something I'll have students complete. I see it as a perfect sub day lesson plan.
Tuesday: Yes, there's more!
1. "What Poetry Can Do for for You...Even If You're Not a Poet" from Sara Lewis Holmes.
Okay, I'm a horrible poet. See for yourself. I'm laying all my cookies on the table with this one. It's the product of Sara's lesson.
I agree with Sam here. To “get out of the way,” try putting yourself in your character’s shoes. What would he/she do at those moments when you’re stuck? It’s almost like a theater improv game. I tell students, “Don’t think. Take yourself to that place. Be the character, and write it down.”