Getting kids to write

Discussion in 'Fourth Grade' started by TeacherWhoRuns, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. TeacherWhoRuns

    TeacherWhoRuns Companion

    Dec 14, 2011
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    Apr 23, 2018

    This is fourth grade.

    All of the ideas presented are great, and I'd have already tried many of them if I wasn't dealing with a principal who is so locked into curriculum that doing anything "off book" is considered as not meeting expectations. I'm not kidding. I have a coworker who noticed that her first graders needed work forming letters correctly. She found lessons and worksheets and employed various strategies, only to be told to stop doing anything that wasn't provided by the district. It's incredibly frustrating.

    So, while it would be great to do storyboards and let students write about their own interests, I don't have that kind of flexibility. The program we're teaching jumps from one style to another. Editorial, narrative, persuasive piece, etc. on specific topics. The problem is not necessarily getting them interested in what they're writing, as it is to get them to do anything. As I said originally, it's not everyone. It's only a few boys who are unwilling to actually do any work. We can have discussions all day about engaging kids, but it's hard to get the ones who don't care to turn around and make an effort....especially in the last two months of school.

    Given the restraints I have placed on me as far as teaching this year, plus some difficult personalities, I'm not so much asking for advice as venting frustrations.
  2. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

    Aug 2, 2002
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    Apr 24, 2018

    I am tutoring an ESL student and found that he loves using magnetic poetry words. I formulate a sentence and put those particular words in an envelope. He has to use all the words to create a logical sentence with none left over. Great for syntax. It worked well and he loved it. I also found a few nouns that he didn't know and that surprised me. This would be hard to do with a large group, admittedly.
  3. Been There

    Been There Habitué

    Oct 4, 2017
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    Apr 25, 2018

    I can definitely understand your frustration at being hobbled by your thickheaded principal! I was able to connect with the most challenging students like the ones you describe in your class only because I was allowed to augment, deviate and modify the adopted curriculum. Most importantly, I was allow to innovate, something that many teachers are not allowed to do.

    If your P. possesses some degree of reasoning ability, perhaps you can convince him to allow you to try out a few suggestions offered here, before the current school year ends. Without some creative intervention now, the boys' outlook doesn't look very bright.

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