Tag Archives: young beginning writers

Steve Peha: Be a Better Writer – When are you coming to Australia Steve?

Peha

I’ve been incorporating Steve Peha’s writing strategies into my writing teaching for many years. I don’t have a huge amount of Facebook friends but I’m pleased Steve is one of them! You’ll find some amazing support here… Also when Angela Stockman recognises a literacy leader, I listen! Another Facebook friend! ūüôā

Website

Cheers Nina

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Loving these: Can’t wait to get my hands on them… PM Sounds In Words

The PM Sounds in Words – will love using these…

The PM Sounds in Words series explores phonological awareness in a meaningful context, in a PM context. It enables children to become aware of the sounds made by many regular letter patterns that can be found in high frequency and interest words. The series enables children to hear the sounds, say the sounds, read the sounds and write the sounds. There are four PM Sounds in Words sets; each set comprises 10 Little Books and 1 Big Book with IWB software. Cengage – Nelson

We’ve recently purchased a set of the PM Sounds in Words Big Books and I’m looking forward to using them to support my classroom program. I’m a huge fan of PM and have written many times about the PM Writing Genre Big Books. I’ll be writing about how I use these in my classroom in future posts. If you’re looking for further information contact Christine Manns christinemanns.nelsonsales@cengage.com¬†for expert advice.

Cheers Nina

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Comprehension: A 4 Part Diorama – Three Little Pigs or Little Red Riding Hood

One of our Prep classrooms was working on comprehension dioramas and I knew I had to make these with my students. The children have been engaged in narratives and are loving this task. Young children need to be able to demonstrate their understanding in a variety of ways and having opportunities to create is important. Writing a narrative is our genre focus along with comprehension.

The narrative has a beginning, middle, end, problem and resolution. Using a fairy tale works well beacause the children are familiar with the story and this is important. They were read two stories and were able to choose which story they liked best.

The first task was to complete a story map. The map is used by students to guide their diorama. The children will use their diorama to retell the fairy tale to a peer and then to the grade. Identifying the problem and resolution will help my students format and write their own simple narratives.

Cheers Nina

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Prep (5&6 Year Olds) Authentic Writing: Father’s Day 2012

My students have made beautiful Father’s Day cards. It was interesting¬†to read that¬†many of my students wrote that they love it when dad reads to them. We had not discussed this as a grade. I hope the fathers enjoy their cards and realise the effort each child made to make their card beautiful.

Above: The front of our cards…

Above: The inside of our cards…

Cheers Nina

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International Baccalaureate IB – PYP: Inquiry – Toy Story / Toy Expo / Toy Expo Recount (Partner Writing) 5&6 Year Olds

For¬†visitors who have been reading my recent posts on our¬† inquiry Toy Story I’ve included photos of the Prep Toy Expo 2012. Once again this was a wonderful experience for our Prep students. The expo gives our students the opportunity to talk, explain and display their design brief and model. The whole school supports this event with parents and community members attending. It also provides a common experience for my students to write about.

Partner writing is collaborative, involves student talk¬†and talking together about a piece of writing¬†¬†assists my students to create a logical sequential structured piece of writing. The saying ‘two heads is better than one’ is certainly true. As I roam I can hear¬† children verbalising their experiences and jointly constructing a¬†written text. This age group need support to think a piece of writing through and verbalising their ideas first is ideal. I’m often heard saying, ‘tell me more’.

Cheers Nina

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Hand over the control! PrepD Student Led Interactive Writing: June 2012 – (5&6 Year Olds)

PrepD Student Led Interactive Writing sessions enable me to roam, listen to conversations and question my student’s understanding of concepts and skills. I’m able to question individuals and groups about the strategies they are using to compose their text. Their feedback is enlightening and I’m always surprised by how well they articulate what they are doing, the strategies they are using and their collective knowledge of punctuation and composition is evident. I’m always looking for the transfer of explicit teaching foci.

Recently my students took their parents on a Student Led Tour of their learning and we decided to write about the tour.

I’ve written about this strategy numerous times in my blog. To read more simply type PrepD Student Led Interactive Writing in the search box. I firmly believe this strategy scaffolds, supports and accelerates my student’s writing.

Cheers Nina

 

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2010 The journey begins for a group of 4&5 Year Olds. Prep- The first formal year of education in the Australian school system begins. Follow our journey!

Yesterday was the very first day of formal education for 21 students in my Prep grade. They arrived with their parents, some grandparents and special others to celebrate the beginning of their 13 year journey (Prep to Year 12). After photos and goodbyes the parents and special others left leaving their most precious little people to start their journey.

Organisation¬†and self management starts day one in¬†our classroom. After settling the children, we talked about how we organise ourselves. Firstly, our belongings. The children produced their full schools bags and were shown¬†where to put their lunch boxes, drink bottles, message bags, library bags and art smocks. They were then given a plain sticker to write their name on in bright colors. This sticker was placed¬†where they will keep their bag.¬†They will name all their books the same way. You will not walk into my classroom and find name tags pre made and placed. My children name all their belongings themselves and learn where they are to keep them. They had a name¬†card to copy from if they were unsure. Most just wrote their name or something like it. It doesn’t matter because they know their sticker.

This morning the children arrived for their second day and promptly started unpacking their bag and placing everything where they were shown. Only one parent started to unpack their child’s bag and quickly stopped when I gently reminded her that her child knew where to put everything. These children are very capable of managing themselves when given the opportunity. The children will also be having an afternoon when they will invite their parents¬† into the classroom to show how we organise our classroom and how they organise themselves. I have also set up¬†our classroom, which isn’t as big as my room last year with two distinct learning areas for the children to sit. They now know where ever I sit, they sit¬†in front¬†of me. This gives those restless young children an opportunity to move and refocus. This really does work and I’ll include some photos next week. Each area has a different focus and teaching aids ready to use.

Our day started with our reading of Big Books ( I have my favourites ) which involve movement and chant.  We looked at sentences, words and letters. As we are introducing THRASS as a strategy for teaching spelling, I introduced the chart. We started to get to know letter names and the sounds they make in certain words. Connections were being made, new words discovered and engagement was evident. These children are desperate to learn, they want to get going!

I asked a child want they really wanted to try and¬†it was writing and reading. Perfect! We can do that… My teaching approach is Language Experience, so we talked about something we were all doing together and I got the answer I was looking for. They were all at school. I asked for a sentence. One child said, ‘I am at school.’ Once again this was the sentence I wanted. I then asked if anyone knew what an ‘ I ‘ looked like. Hands went up and a child came up to the board and wrote ‘I’. We were off and going strong. I showed them my hand signal for I and now they could read a word. The next word was ‘am’ , we stretched it out, listened¬†to the sounds letters made in this word, looked at our chart, chanted it and had a think about what it might look like. They could tell me the initial¬†sound ‘a’, so once again a child came up and wrote an ‘a’. As the children have had no handwriting lessons¬†I urge¬†them to ‘have a¬†go’ and ¬†write what they¬†think represents the sound. It was interesting to note that the child looked at the THRASS chart. I introduced spaces between words, a capital letter and full stop. It doesn’t matter if they don’t remember, it’s the start and these ‘concepts of print’are¬†explained over and over.

We continued until,¬†as a grade we¬†had written the sentence. Amazing! Their sentence was then put on a sentence strip, cut up and placed in our sentence strip board. This¬†will be¬†the first sentence in our first ‘Language Experience’ little book which will become a ‘take home’ book. We played games with the words which they loved. With technology¬†at my finger tip, I was able to type their sentence for them to trace, copy and illustrate. They really needed some table time to complete a task and enjoy producing something for their ‘I am at school’ poster. Each child read the sentence to me. We’re reading and writing, problem solving and engaged.

‘ poster.

Cheers Nina

P.S Jacinta, if you read this post. I’ll be¬†catching up soon and hope your first week of teaching¬†has been wonderful.

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