Lucy Calkins Writer's Workshop Kinder

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by miss_annette, Jun 24, 2015.

  1. miss_annette

    miss_annette Rookie

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    Jun 24, 2015

    Hi all!

    I just finished my first year of teaching. Yay! I taught kinder and I will be teaching kinder again next year. Last year I really struggled with my writing curriculum. I'm really interested in the writers workshop but I can't afford to go to the writing institute they're offering in my area. I do have the units of study and I'm reading the nuts and bolts book right now. I've also seen some great units on teachers pay teachers. What do you all recommend? Use the units of study or maybe purchase a unit online??
     
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  3. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Jun 24, 2015

    I really believe you can teach writers workshop without going to a training. I'm doing it, and I'm self taught.

    I have the 3-5 units of study, but I only use those for ideas and as a basis. I love the book 6+1 Traits of Writing. That's very helpful to me. I also love the book Marvelous Minilessons for Teaching Intermediate Writing. There is a primary counterpart! http://www.amazon.com/Marvelous-Minilessons-Teaching-Beginning-Writing/dp/0872075915 Another good resource for primary is No More "I'm Done!" I've heard good things about that book.

    I think some googling will get you good examples of what writing workshop looks like practically carried out in others' classrooms. To be honest, I've found a LOT more of that for primary than for upper grades! (I used to teach 1st, so I've looked for both.)

    Hope that helps a bit. :)
     
  4. miss_annette

    miss_annette Rookie

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    Jun 24, 2015

    Thank you for the input! I will look into those resources.

    When I taught writing last year I felt like I was mostly just teaching around our assessments. I feel like I want my K's writing everyday.

    I also used a method (which I think is called Write from the beginning) where we would work on one piece all week. Monday we'd create a circle map on the topic, Tuesday take the info and put into a tree map, Wednesday start creating sentences, and by the end of the week my students would use the thinking maps and transfer the info into a writing piece. I got really bored with that method though. I really liked the workshop structure instead (mini lessons, etc.) I tried it a little last year but I was all over the place with it and it was already a few months into the school year. I'm trying to start it the right way for next year.
     
  5. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    Jun 24, 2015

    There is a really good writing lessons on TpT by Deanna Jump for kindergarten that follows Lucy and it puts her lessons in an easier formate and comes with anchor charts. It is really helpful.
     
  6. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Jun 24, 2015

    When I saw "circle map" and "tree map" I immediately double checked to see if you are in CA, and of course you are. ;) My former school (in So Cal), where I taught first, was a thinking maps school as well, so I know the process you are talking about very well because my first grade team used it constantly. I agree - I got bored with it, too! I think it is great for primary, but can be stifling. When I started doing workshop with my first graders, I continued doing the thinking maps method for social studies and science writing, and for the more formal writing required in my grade level. It gave a nice balance. I'll tell you - my kids ADORED writing workshop. They loved the freedom, and I think they felt like real writers for the first time.

    All that to say...I think you can do both. :D
     
  7. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Jun 24, 2015

    p.s. I don't know if you are in So Cal, but I found out today that Lucy Calkins is speaking at the California Reading Association conference in Riverside this year. She RARELY comes to CA, if ever. I'm thinking about going. :)
     
  8. miss_annette

    miss_annette Rookie

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    Jun 24, 2015

    Thank you for the suggestion! I found one I really like by a seller named Ms. LilyPad.

    Yes I am in Ca! I agree and I like that idea. Still incorporate thinking maps for more formal writing like the district assessments but use the writer's workshop on a day to day basis.
     
  9. Leatherette

    Leatherette Comrade

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    Jun 24, 2015

    Please, teach your Kinders handwriting (preferably w/Handwriting Without Tears) before/during the Caulkins units. Too many kids get referred for sped for "writing concerns" because they are expected to be "authors" before they can form letters.
     
  10. miss_annette

    miss_annette Rookie

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    Yes, at the beginning of the year I focus on handwriting. I actually like to reinforce that all year long.
     
  11. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    Jun 25, 2015

    I agree! But districts are moving away from handwriting instruction, like they can just magically form letters and understand them!
     
  12. miss_annette

    miss_annette Rookie

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    Jun 25, 2015

    One more question!

    The LC books I have are not the grade specific books. They are just the books for primary writing. Will these work? I'm seriously considering buying the K specific units of study. They are about $200 for the set. Although, in all honesty I feel like my school should be getting them for me. Hmm..
     
  13. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    Jun 26, 2015

    The older edition will work, but it will a little more difficult to follow. I personally would not invest in the books with my own money. I would rather spend my money differently, but if it fits within your means, go for it.
     
  14. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Jun 26, 2015

    The units are great, but I wouldn't spend my wn money on....my district purchased for us plus I service with a literacy coach.

    There are plenty of great resources online as mentioned already. If you already know the nuts and lots of workshop, you should be able to adopt anything you find to fit this approach. :)
     

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