Launching Writer's Workshop with How I Spent My Summer


Click here to find ideas for launching writer's workshop.  Included are ideas and  an anchor chart for the very engaging book How I Spent My Summer Vacation.  Get your back to school plans ready.   Perfect for elementary classrooms and homeschool children.  {kindergarten, first, second, k, 1st, 2nd}

Have you noticed that handwriting and sentence formation have gone down hill over the last several years? Years ago, it was very normal to expect 2nd graders to capitalize letters and write proper sentences.  Sadly enough, it took me a while to realize that this wasn't a normal any more.   Students aren't writing proper sentences and it isn't just a fluke year. In order to address this I launch the year with How I Spent My Summer Vacation and Handwriting Bootcamp.  

Handwriting Bootcamp is a very simple yet effective concept.  We go through every letter of the alphabet throughout the first couple of weeks of school and practice writing letters the proper way on proper handwriting paper.  Yes I know we don't have time for this, but if you can't read their writing during the school year it will take much longer than just stopping and teaching penmanship.  Before we start writing I hand out pencil grips to show everyone exactly where their fingers should be placed.  I'm a big fan of the Pencil Grip Company and I am in no way being paid to say that.  After I tried them and loved them, I wrote a grant sometime ago to get a class set.  We watch Youtube videos on proper handwriting, and when the students write neatly for a couple of weeks they join our Handwriting Hall of Fame and receive a special pencil.  They also know that if they get sloppy they lose their place and can't get their end of the year pencil until they make it back to the Hall of Fame.  The Hall of Fame is a simple anchor chart describing our expectations of handwriting in the classroom.  When students make the Hall of Fame they get to sign the anchor chart in front of the class.  They love it.

My very first writer's workshop is done with the mentor text How I Spent My Summer Vacation.  We look at a mentor sentence and follow all of the prompts from the anchor chart below.  Then the students write about their summer focusing on proper sentences.  Throughout the beginning of the year, I really express the need to produce one quality sentence over a ton of improper sentences.   Make sure to watch the video below to see other ideas and stop back by for our entire Back To School Series!

Click here to find ideas for launching writer's workshop.  Included are ideas and  an anchor chart for the very engaging book How I Spent My Summer Vacation.  Get your back to school plans ready.   Perfect for elementary classrooms and homeschool children.  {kindergarten, first, second, k, 1st, 2nd}

Click here to find ideas for launching writer's workshop.  Included are ideas and  an anchor chart for the very engaging book How I Spent My Summer Vacation.  Get your back to school plans ready.   Perfect for elementary classrooms and homeschool children.  {kindergarten, first, second, k, 1st, 2nd}

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