When Writing Workshop Isn’t Working, Mark OvermeyerWendy Cannon
Points to Remember
Students—Writing and sharing IS expected.
Choice is key--Teacher can provide a topic/prompt that is general enough that will allow choice but also give some focus. For example the smells writing we did at SMWP orientation.
Anchor Writing--provide common experiences that all students can relate to, refer back to, gives everyone a positive experience with writing.
Poetry--capitalize on word choice, simile, strong verbs and this can lead to more vivid prose
Assessment--purpose needs to be clear to both students and teachers-for a grade or to have a body of work to see whether there has been growth.
Conventions--have kids look for their own conventions errors, using a different color, this way you can see what they can fix. Priority to have kids be able to edit as they work—want them to be as independent as possible. Kids need to be comfortable writing and be able to get enough on the page before focusing on conventions and sentence structure.
Overmeyer says that story should focus on actions, Lamott says the big focus is having good characters first, then see what they do. In Neglected R book, Monica Wood also stated that the action of the character (in response to 'trouble') is what makes the story interesting.