With the school year winding down, it might sound crazy to even think about making a plan for teaching writing next year. If you’re anything like me, you’re already counting down the days until summer break. But I’m here to tell you that this is actually the BEST time to start thinking about your writing block for next year!
Why Plan Writing Now?
Although next school year might be the last thing on your mind, I want you to image what it would be like to come back from summer vacation with a solid writing plan in place for next year. Sounds amazing, right? I promise, it’s not only possible, but it’s actually not as difficult as it sounds.
Right now, your current year of teaching writing is fresh in your mind. You know not only the most common struggles you’ve had, but also the wins: the lessons and strategies you want to be sure to repeat again next year. I suggest making a two-column list of things that worked and areas for growth. It’s so much easier to remember now, while you’re still in the classroom with your students.
Think about how you’ve integrated writing this year. How much time do you spend directly modeling writing skills? What genres do you practice? What skills did students struggle the most with? How is grammar incorporated? Taking a honest assessment of your current writing block helps you think strategically about next year.
What Should My Writing Plan Include?
The most important part of well-crafted writing plan is setting aside a dedicated writing block. This will ensure that your students are practicing their writing skills on a consistent, daily basis. There are 3 key elements that will make your writing block successful:
- Flexibility: Your writing plan must be able to flex no matter what your classroom schedule looks like or the kinds of learners you have in your classroom. Build differentiation into your writing block so you can meet the needs of a diverse group of students.
- Simplicity: There’s no need for complicated workshop models or elaborate note-taking. Keep your mini-lessons simple, so students can clearly see how to apply each writing skill.
- Efficiency: Be strategic about your writing time so you can make the most of every minute. Put writing supports like one-one-one conferencing and peer feedback into place so students can work towards writing independently.
Taking the Next Steps
Are you ready to get serious about making a writing game plan? I’m offering a FREE 1-hour training for 2nd-6th grade teachers. In this training, you’ll learn how to pre-assess students at the beginning of the year and make a solid game plan for teaching writing.
I’ll teach you how to build in simple engagement strategies and natural differentiation to support our SPED, ELL, reluctant writers and gifted students. Plus, everyone who attends the training will receive a one month of FREE lesson plans that are specific to your grade level.