My classroom is made up of 15 funny, sweet, and energetic students! I have 9 First graders and 6 Kindergarteners. For the first time in my teaching career I have more girls than boys. This year I have 11 girls in my class and only 4 boys! My classroom is a mix of ages, abilities, and backgrounds. I have 6 Hispanic students in my classroom, all of which speak English, but it can be hard at times to communicate with families as I am not fluent in Spanish at all!
This year, more than ever, my students have been motivated to write. They are not all writing a lot right now, and sometimes I have trouble reading it, but they are all trying. I have never really looked at myself as a writer, but I took a class last semester at ASU that helped me to see myself more as a writer. Through this class, I was required to do a lot of writing and to involve my students in lesson plans that involved getting them to write more. I told my students that I was in school and learning how to be a better writer, I even showed them my writing notebook. I believe that letting students know that I write daily, and that I too am going to school to learn how to write better encouraged them to try harder. They thought that it is amazing that I’m in school too! Through classes at ASU, I have also been reminded of just how important it is to model writing each day. Some days we, as teachers, are pressed to get everything in and can skip this very important step.
I teach writing by modeling whole group, explaining my reasoning, and allowing students to have input. Students then work independently as my assistant and I roam around the room and check in on them. Writing is also doing in my small reading groups. I have students write about the books that we are reading. First graders practice writing prompts, and Kindergarten students write about their favorite part of the book, what happened in the book, etc. We also have Daily 5 each day. During Daily 5, students have a chance to write about anything they would like. Some students take this time to write stories, letters to friends, make a card, anything their little minds can imagine.
This semester, I want to be able to continue encouraging my students to view writing as fun and to see themselves as writers. I want them to learn that they are a writer, no matter the level that they are writing at. I also want to know more about writers workshops. When I was student teaching, I used writers workshop but was learning as I went. I liked using it and want to know more. I want to use the suggestions in our reading to encourage and support my students with their writing. I will use the readings to help me set my classroom up as a positive environment that promotes writing!