Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Authors' Meeting

Writing a well-organized, four-page narrative that demonstrates craft and voice is a fourth grade objective.  To make that story really good children have to introduce the character, setting, and problem, then tell the story event by event with lots of character interplay, "show don't tell" moments, suspense, dialogue, and an ending that leaves you with what happened and how the character(s) felt. I also don't want to forget that the story needs rich language and lots of transition words too.  That's essentially the expected story ingredients when it comes to standardized tests.

Underlying this test task though is the teaching goal of creating wonderful writers, storytellers, and multimedia composers--terrific communicators.

Today, as we approach mid-unit with respect to narrative, we'll have an authors' meeting.

During the meeting, I'll pose the following questions

1. Does anyone know what our narrative writing goal is? Do you remember what a "narrative" is?
2. What have we already done to reach that goal?
3. What do you or the entire class have to do to keep moving towards the goal?
4. How can I help you reach this goal?

After our authors' meeting, I'll review the writer's workshop steps and protocols, and then children will get to work finalizing their last narrative, and beginning new stories.

While there's a temptation to run through the curriculum since there are so many standards, good teaching requires that we take the time to acknowledge our goals, strategies, process, and needs.  That's what we'll do this morning.