I love teaching writing. More importantly, I love reading what students write. Writing is essays, song lyrics, comics, advertisements, tweets, blogs, novels, and notes of encouragement stuck to my coffeemaker in the morning. Writing is everywhere. Educators have the delicate responsibility of teaching standards-based units to our eager writers. How we introduce writing to our students can set the stage for the entire year.
When I heard the song “Brave” by Sarah Bareilles, I got goose bumps. It is a beautiful song with a strong message:
Say what you wanna say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave
This is how I will start the year with my writers.
I have an advantage since this is the second year with my students. We have a 5th/6th grade loop at Merton Intermediate School. I already know they are talented, thoughtful, amazing writers. My hope for this year is we can build on last year’s foundation of mini lessons and conferring, and they come to workshop feeling brave and ready to take risks.
For the first week of school, we will listen to “Brave” as we transition to Writer’s Workshop time. When the song is complete, we will be ready to start our mini lesson. Each week, a student will select a new song that inspires them as a writer.
Be brave this year!