What does Charlotte’s Web Teach Us about the Importance of Optimism?

Can we change the fate of our students with our optimism? I think we can. Look what optimism did for the pig, Wilbur in the book, Charlotte’s Web.  Charlotte contrived

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How Can A Blank Booklet Improve Student Writing?

  Sometime teaching writing doesn’t have to be hard!  Here is a simple technique you can try tomorrow.  Often children tell stories and then we encourage them to write those

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Why “Ask 3 Before Me” Worries Me (And What I Would Do Instead)

How can it be a bad thing that a child is reaching out for help?  Great question. Let me be clear. Partner work is crucial. I want kids to talk,

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In-Classroom Visits:  A Wonderful Way to Learn New Writing Techniques

Many people have asked me what a typical day looks like when I visit a school. Although the work will look different depending upon where I go and what the

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One Simple Tip for Improving the Feedback You Give Students.

Do you want to give your students feedback in this upcoming school year that dramatically improves their writing? If so, read on. Teachers often prepare for giving feedback by looking

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Make your Planning More Effective With This One Simple Tip!

The new school year is just around the corner. Have you started planning your Writing Workshop? Inherent in Writing Workshop is the use of formative assessment—watching your kids after you

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Teaching and Living with Persistence and Resilience

Read on to see how I coped the week I had head lice, a flat tire and food poisoning all the while being 5 months pregnant… In my last blog,

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Qualities of a Self-Directed Writer

This summer I’ve been hard at work writing a draft of my new book that is about creating self-directed learners in the Writing Workshop.  Today as the school year begins

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Some thoughts about the first few days of school

Most of you are probably back to school now so I wanted to take this opportunity to wish you the happiest of new years! The start of the year for

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