Friday, June 23, 2017

It's Summertime!

Introducing my 10 FREE writing lessons from my summer learning program 2017!!

Hey Friends!

My hope is that June is treating you all well so far :)

We've been finished with school for just over a week. Then end of the year, like always, comes at you like a ton of bricks! June 1st arrives and you think, "Ah, I've still got a couple weeks. There is so much I can get finished!"

And then WHAM!! 

Picnics, field trips, half days, pictures, assemblies, locker clean-out, parties... and before you know it, the last day is here and all the stuff you had planned goes by the wayside because you are too busy signing yearbooks, giving hugs, and singing Moana at the top of your lungs with the kids who drove you nuts all year but who you now suddenly realize are leaving you and you are not sure how you can go a week, let alone a whole summer, without hearing any of them ask you for a pencil! Phew!

Anyway, there isn't much time to lament because our summer learning program starts in about two weeks. Like last year, I plan to share all of my lesson plans with you here on the blog.

All the writing lessons that I'll be doing this year in summer school are FREE on the blog:

So, this year I will be teaching writing again to 7th and 8th graders. My plan to have the students write their biography... and yes, I did mean biography and not autobiography! Something that I've noticed about kids is that they give me more detail when they are writing fictional stories. They do a better job describing the characters, how they look and act, and the conflicts they are involved in. I'm wondering if they write about themselves in the third person if I can get some of the same detail. Not sure how it will work, but that is what I love our summer learning program: we have the freedom to try out all sorts of new ideas and techniques!

I've got an amazing bunch of biographical picture books to use as mentors.

My goal is two-fold... to get kids to do some awesome writing AND to teach them about some awesome people! Something that I've noticed over the years is that kids don't just know "stuff" anymore. And I'm not sure why, exactly, but I can't help but wonder if a steady diet of niche YouTube over plain old television has something to do with it?

Anyway, I want to share with them books about important and interesting people whose stories deserve to be known! 

I'll start posting the lessons the second week of July... my plan is to teach the lesson and see how it goes, make some tweaks if necessary, and then post it here for you all.

So, enjoy the rest of June and stay tuned for some great lessons :)

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Monday, June 5, 2017

Present Participle List for June

Grading... our Video Game Projects. For realz, this project saves my sanity at the end of every.single.year. Kids love it, I love it, parents love it, administration loves it. Win, win, win, win.

Prepping... for our summer learning program. I'll be offering lots of free "writing with picture book mentors" lessons like I did last year. We are working on a biography/autobiography writing project this year and I'll be using these beautiful picture books.

Making... these sweet little end-of-year treats for my kiddos! Grab them here for FREE!!

Reading... these PD and "grown-up" books this summer.

Cleaning... out my classroom! I'm moving to a new room next year (still in the same position), and anytime I move, I use it as a time to PURGE! The mess is making me twitchy, though!!

Loving... that this was the sky when we left the beach at 9pm the other night!! Happy summer!!

Enjoying... the hot sun and icy drinks :) I am a summer girl at heart!!

What is your present participle list for June so far? I'd love to hear from you!!