Writing Workshop Wednesday: Mini-lesson 1: Where do you get ideas?

Thank you to Educasong, Kimberley Geswein, and Creative Clips!
I used their wonderful products to make my button!

Okay!  Onto Writer's Workshop stuff!
I LOVE teaching writing.  Am I really that good at it?
I don't think that I really am, but I enjoy it, so it makes it seem like I am good at writing.  :)

I have been working really hard this year to try to do my mini-lessons in a sequence that makes sense.  It makes sense to me at least!

Of course I started with building stamina for Writer's Workshop.  If you are interested is seeing our daily routine check out the post HERE.

Now that we are into the routine, we get down to the nitty gritty!

The first lessons that I do are to introduce our classroom writing goals for the year.  You can read more about my classroom goals and our Writing Notebooks HERE.

I start every W.W. with a mini-lesson.  Sometimes I model writing.  Sometimes it is a grammar lesson, sometimes I share what a classmate has written.  It just depends on what we are working on. 
Our lessons always fits into our two goals:
My audience CAN read what I write.
My audience WANTS to read what I write.

 I try to vary my lessons so that I cover what I need to cover and we don't get hung up on one topic.

Monday: What do Writer's Write?
Tuesday: Grammar (sometimes Mentor Sentences)
Wednesday: How to make our writing so that other want to read it.
Thursday: How to write so others can read what we write (conventions).

We don't always have W.W. on Friday's because we switch for "Non-fiction" Fridays (science, social studies, and health).  So if we do have W.W. that day it is usually something fun.  Do I stick to this schedule all of the time?  No.  I am a pretty go with the flow kind of teacher.

I was at a workshop one time where the presenter mentioned that if you don't want the kiddos to copy off of what you write about, write about things that they can't or don't do.  Funny, I am infamous among my students for writing about doing laundry.  They find it interesting that I can find so many ways to write about doing laundry, and I have so many laundry adventures!  
We decided as a class that having a good Idea is important to help us meet our goal of "My audience wants to read what I write".

 we start working on Ideas.  Where do ideas come from?  What kinds of things do writer's write about?  
Then, we work on making some lists.
Here are the pages that we used to do our brainstorming.

First, we talk about things that we like.  This list usually is where you get "Video Games", "Ice Cream", "My Family".  We talk about what kinds of things make good topics for stories.  
We write one idea in each heart. 

But, we also talk about how sometimes good stories come from those things that we don't like.  So we also make a list ideas of things to write about that we don't like.  This is usually a lot of fun.  It is generally good for some grossness and some giggles. We right one thing we don't like in each "Stop Sign".

Click on the picture above to get your own "Things I don't like" freebie!

Of course, then we share with our partners what we are thinking about writing about during writing time and go off to write.  We usually have a lot of good ideas after this lesson.

What would be on your "Things I don't like list?"  Bugs are always on mine!


  1. Love the laundry idea! I hate students copying my ideas, too...so to "model" our field trip writing, I pretended I went to the beach! (Which would have been better than our trip to the park...) Thanks for a fun, new topic!

    1. You are welcome! If I am not doing laundry I am cooking dinner, driving a car, or planning lessons and grading papers! Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving a comment!


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