In my lesson openers I always have a "connect" in which I connect students' thinking about yesterday's lesson to today's lesson. I then have a "teach" in which I model for students the lesson of the day and also have them try it out. When I think about my modeling, I use three categories; skill, strategy, and process. I model by stating the skill to the students, then giving them a strategy in which to use the skill, followed by the process to try out the strategy.
Connect: I will say, “Yesterday we utilized our peers, to get a second opinion on our writing. Today you are going to take all of the guidance and support you have received from adults and peers to compose your final draft.
Teach: I will say, “In order to showcase my best final draft, I am going to practice the skill of using all of the feedback I have received on my writing and the strategy of using my feedback as I think through my final draft. The process I will use is as follows:
1) Re-read any feedback I have received from peers and adults.
2) Start writing my final draft.
3) Think as I write.
I will model for students how I read through my feedback (have another adult write you authentic feedback or you write it as a “phantom editor” for modeling purposes). I will start my final draft, but stop and think to myself along the way. I will say to myself for example, “Hmm….is this really what I want to say? Could I use another word? Could I add more sensory details?” I really want to model for students that I am not just copying from my draft; I am thinking and making changes as I go. I will show them how my first couple of sentences in my final draft are not the same as the first couple of sentences in my rough.
Active Engagement: I will say, “Get out everything you need to be successful with your draft today. You should have your rubric, you drafts and your mentor texts. Read through all of the feedback you have received. I now want to see you “think as you write.” I should see that your first sentence on your final draft is not the exact copy of the first sentence from your rough draft. I will check for understanding by asking every level of learner (at least 3 students-one who is at standard, one is approaching standard, and one who is above standard). I will ask the students, “Read me your first sentence of your rough draft and the first sentence of your final draft.” I will then see if I need to re-teach “think as I write.”
Closing of Active Engagement: I will say, “Remember successful writers showcase their best final draft by practicing the skill of using all of the feedback they have received on their writing and the strategy of using the feedback as they think through their final draft. They re-read any feedback they have received, they start writing their final draft and they think as they write.
Independent Practice: I will say, “Now you are going to write your final draft. As they are working independently and quietly, (I like to play classical or smooth jazz for“writing”music (I just create a play list on Pandora Internet radio) I will not confer with them about their writing. I want to ensure students are taking everything they have learned and are writing independently. If students have questions I can refer them back to the rubric, but for publishing days, I am not coaching into their writing, publishing can be used as an assessment. Their final draft is a form of assessment. They will have the rest of the period for writing and then I have them finish their draft for homework. If their independent writing stamina is low, I may give them another day in class for the first unit. This will be something that will have to be built upon in order to build independence.
Closing: For closing today I will do a whole class share out. I will ask the class, “What is your plan for finishing your final draft for homework tonight?” I will check for understanding by asking every level of learner (at least 3 students-one who is at standard, one is approaching standard, and one who is above standard). I will tell students they must come tomorrow with their final draft published in order to have their best grade. I also tell them about the next day’s publishing party as a motivator in which they will receive a treat (explained in the next lesson). The Students Have Published Their Draft, What's Next?