Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Meandering M

So, we will try to follow the plan it just might take longer than we first expected.  I have a Pinterest board titled writing prompts and discussion starters where I pin various images (obviously) and quotes, links to prompt websites and ideas that I can use to get my students writing.  I will usually start the year by asking my kids to plan  verbal responses to various prompts before we go to writing.  My students have often experienced years of failure and frustration when asked to write so we have to get past those feelings of inadequacy first thing.  Most of my kids can talk well and do a great job of talking to avoid the work. 

When I plan my lessons and want to guide discussion or writing, I always attempt the writing/ speaking task for myself first.  So, it makes sense that I post my attempts here.  If I do it first, I have an exemplar to show my students.  We examine the differences in the writing pieces and I focus the students' attention on the aspect of writing that they need to improve upon.  

I usually start the year with some 'getting to know you' activities.  This is an extension of the Name Alliteration game (students say their name and a noun that starts with the same letter as their name, or say an adjective that starts with the same letter of their name e.g. Marvellous M).  

I didn't initially start out this way, I started with the word "meandering" and just went with that.  It happened to start with the same letter as my name.  You could get the students to play the name game first then use the word they said to start their writing.  Here is my meandering piece.  Note: I didn't use a dictionary or thesaurus when I did this and it is important to encourage your students to use words they already know.  This will allow the teacher to quickly see how much work needs to be done on vocabulary expansion.  

Here it is. 

My mind meanders.  Mythical meets mundane in the magic of pen to paper.  Memories , mysteries and monsters bound with ink in a prison of pages.  The marvel of the written word is truly mystical. Melodies of notes and chords.  Time stands still so the reader may see.  You can see how my mind meanders.  

Short and hopefully sweet.  

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