I really want the students to use their time very wisely today to complete their drafts of the essay. I will ask the students reflect on their progress and make a plan for the day as to what they needed to do to be able to complete their drafts. I will use the same handout for the closure today as it will allow them to compare their goals to what they are able to get done. Here is the Advanced Organizer and Closure handout.
I will give them a few minutes to reflect and then ask them to share. This will allow me to make a game plan as well. I will often separate the students into groups based on progress, which allows me to differentiate and work with the struggling students.
They can use this plan to help them focus their time and manage their day.
Today is a big day for writer's workshop. The students will be working on drafting their first drafts of the argumentative piece. I know will be met with a couple of road blocks. First of all, the students lack stamina for writing. They are not used to writing for long periods of time, so I am expecting some students to lose motivation. To prevent this, I will often have the students stop for a brain break of some kind.
While the students are working, I will be circulating and conferencing with the students. I want to double check the organization of their papers and discuss their writing. This is a great opportunity to really assess a students' strengths and weaknesses as a writer. I also like to conference with them because it allows me to really push them with their craft. Most students are capable of writing well-they just don't want to put in the effort needed to craft a piece.
I will encourage the students to use their graphic organizers when they are writing to think about their work as they are writing. This will allow them to learn the process of writing.
I will give them the entire period to construct their drafts. Here is a students sharing how he uses the graphic organizer.
At the beginning of the lesson we reflected on our progress and made a plan for the day. I want the students to go back to that plan and reflect on how well they did following it. Were they able to stay on task? Did they have to change their plan at all? Why?
I will have them reflect on the handout and then turn it in for me to assess. Taking ownership for their own work has proven to really help the students produce much higher quality of work. For whatever reason, if they are asked to evaluate it, they take that much more time to ensure it is done well!