Yesterday I read an article with my students about S.E. Hinton in preparation for starting The Outsiders. In the article she mainly talks about her process of writing. (The article is an old hard copy and I have no idea where I got it.) At the end of the article, she says that the way for students to learn paragraph and sentence structure is to read a lot so it becomes more a part of the subconscious. She also talks about how teachers can get students to enjoy writing, mainly by not grading so harshly and having students fix their mistakes because this is what an editor would do.
Now that MCAS is over for this year, I realized that I have a little time to get my students to enjoy writing, maybe by letting them write what they want to write instead of an “assignment”. I’ve also really enjoyed reading Soulemama’s and Earthmama’s “Right Now” posts. I did one yesterday for my own blog and I would love to incorporate that with my students. A more steam of consciousness, creative, fun approach to writing because they hate it and no graphic organizer is going to fix that.
Are there other ideas out there for teaching writing in a more enjoyable, less structured way? I kind of have free rein right now as we head into the end of the year. I was thinking of making Friday a kind of “Mindful Writing” day. What do you guys think?