Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Lists and poems

Whew wee...Goodness! I think that the first few weeks of school is a lot like child birth in that we forget exactly how crazy it is or we would never do it again. I am being dramatic, but a whirlwind of DSA,  DRA, DIBELs and seemingly impossible deadlines is about to wear me out. I would much rather sit down and read to, read with, or write with my sweet kiddos. Funny thing is that I will do it all over again next year just to spend each and every day reading and writing with a new group of sweeties. So, deep breath...sigh...on with our crazy busy but wonderful day together!

So sad to see some of our wonderful books play hide and seek behind our growing anchors. We have discussed, reviewed, and learned much in a small amount of time. We are definitely on our way to a successful year in reading and writing. 

Students are still enjoying storytelling, and I am so glad to have added such a fun piece to writing workshop. Notebook Now How by Aimee Buckner has been an excellent addition to my professional library, and it has really given me some fun ideas regarding establishing a community of writers that feel as if they truly have a story to share, big or small. 

Another gem I found on my own bookshelf was given to me by someone in my family years ago.  Telling Your Own Stories by Donald Davis has opened so many new ideas for the kiddos in sharing stories. They have enjoyed sharing with their teammates. The fun part of all the storytelling and sharing of ideas is that the first time these kiddos tell me they don't have anything to write...maybe I will have some things to remind them of. And I am sure if I don't, their teammates will. :)

I want to share a fun little read aloud that was a perfect addition to our writing workshop launch as we continue to add a variety of entries in our writer's notebook. Lists are a perfect addition to any notebook. 17 Things I'm Not Allowed to do Anymore by Jenny Offill is a cute list book that starts out, "I had an idea to staple my brother's hair his pillow... I am not allowed to use the stapler anymore." Giggles EVERY time :)

Today's list was our Happy/Sad list. We brainstormed ideas that make us happy or sad. We then discussed how many stories were hiding in this list! This sweet group of kiddos are so open and honest in their thinking. I cannot wait to see what stories they write for me this year.

Rimshots by Charles R. Smith Jr. is way up there on my list of favorites for poetry and launching writing workshop. "Reading books filled with stories and poems inspired me to write my own. The more I read, the more I wrote. And if I wasn't reading a book, I was playing a sport; I played everything, particularly basketball, and spent many afternoons on the court, perfecting my jump shot." ~ Charles R. Smith Jr. What could be more perfect to show where writers get ideas, how they write from what they know and love, and the variety of writing styles they can bring to their notebooks! Not only that, his poems are amazing! 

Off to finish last minute plans for tomorrow ~ 
Happy Reading!

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