Saturday, May 31, 2014

Friday Free-Write

Sometime around November I implemented "Friday Free-Write" in my classroom. I started to get tired with teaching structured writing and wanted to give the children more opportunities to explore their passions and creativity. It immediately became a hit and many of my students did their best writing on Fridays.

The reason I am writing about this is because today I got into a lengthy conversation with a parent at a  baseball game . This parent mentioned that their child struggled with writing in the past, which made them dislike the subject. The parent then went on to say that this year their child was coming up with some very creative and engaging stories. Most of the stories the parent was proud of were stories that I knew the child had worked on during Friday Free-Writes.

I usually write 3-4 prompts on the board during Friday Free-Writes for the students who have trouble coming up with their own topic. As the year progressed, less and less students used my prompts. Additionally, I always allotted 5-15 minutes for the student to share their writing. Sometimes these sharing moments would include the students finding only their favorite paragraph to share with three different people. Sometimes I would allow them to share their whole story with a partner. And sometimes, if there was time, I would allow a couple kids the chance to share their story with the whole class.

Giving the children this opportunity allows for them to strengthen creativity, play with words in a different way, and value their writing more- all because they have a choice.

1 comment:

  1. I saw on Twitter where you were a new blogger and I just wanted to welcome you! I have been blogging just over a year now and it has changed my life in so many ways. If you get a chance, you might want to find your way to Two Writing Teachers. They host a Slice of Life on Tuesdays where you write a story, or slice, about something in your life. It is a wonderful community of writing teachers! Good luck!

    BTW - choice is so important and it has taken me a few years to figure that out! I sometimes do a Five Minute Friday where I give them a word and they have to write for five minutes straight whatever the word brings to mind. I also let them write their own one word on a card and put them in a jar to be drawn out. Fun Fridays!