Stepping back & letting them take control!!!

This week I learned, from class conversations, that I need to step back a little more let the students have the floor.  Recording the students and myself made me realize that my kids can do the sharing all on their own. They can take the responsibility of sharing and asking classmates to share their thoughts!

Before, I was letting the kids share and do some discussing after, but I led the students and called on them to speak. I did step back a lot more last week than I ever thought about before but this week I didn’t lead anything they did. The student sharing even called in the next student to share!

I also read two mentor texts this week!  One was Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by Toni Schotter and When Lightning Comes in a Jar by Patricia Palacco. The first story was to help them realize that stories are all around them!  Some students were saying they couldn’t think of anything more to write about so I wanted to show them that stories are all around us!   The second story was to help add descriptive words in our story. We talked about all the describing words that Patricia Polacco used.

I had almost all of my students wanting to share their writings this week!  They were even arguing about who was going to go first, second, third, and so on!  Major accomplishment!!!!  Even some of my struggling writers were asking to share.  One student,  who struggles weekly with wrong was asking how to spell certain words and most of the time I just tell them to focus on their writing and not their spelling. His exact words back to me were “but, I want to make my writing really good.”  This made me so happy!!!!!

Video of sharing time!

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4 thoughts on “Stepping back & letting them take control!!!

  1. Susan Davis says:

    Stepping back is something that I need to do more of myself. I think that we are so used to stepping in and leading our students toward a goal that it is a habit. Its great that your students are so eager to share that they argue over who will go first. It sounds like you have also given then the language and strategies needed to take the lead themselves.

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  2. Hannah Brady says:

    I’ve had a similar experience where I felt my students needed a lot of help but were perfectly able to do on their own! I think it kind of goes against what teachers feel their job is to just let kids go at it, but it’s neat when it turns out so well. A pleasant surprise!

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  3. jackiebryanblog says:

    Beth,
    I think that stepping back and letting the students experience what it’s like to think like a writer, write and then be in charge of when and how they will share is empowering, exciting and informative for you and the student. Great job!

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  4. brandireedy says:

    It sounds to me like you have reached a point in the year where your students are ready to show you what they have learned. We are all guilty of holding on to the reins because we are afraid of letting them go too soon. I think these moments are some of my favorites in the classroom when you can see just how much they have learned. This week, like all the others, are testimony to the writing teacher that you are, and evidence that your instruction has been effective.

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