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Ministry of Education Printed on recycled paper ISBN 0-7794-8184-4 04-319 © Queen’s Printer for Ontario, 2005Kindergarten to Grade 3Contents Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii Organization and Features of This Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii 1. Overview of Effective Instruction in Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.3 The Goals of Writing Instruction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.4 The Stages of Writing Development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.5 Becoming an Effective Writer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.10 Five Key Instructional Approaches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.22 Setting High Expectations for All Students . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.22 The Role of Technology in Writing Instruction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.23 Planning and Classroom Organization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.24 A Framework for Effective Early Writing Instruction . . . . . . . . . . . 1.25 Thumbnails of Appendix . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.26 Appendix 1-1: Some Suggested Picture Books for Teaching the Elements of Writing References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.27 2. Modelled Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.1 The Frequency of Modelled Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.3 The Role and Responsibilities of the Teacher in Modelled Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.4 Teaching Points . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.5 Sample Lessons Sample Modelled Writing Lesson: Kindergarten . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.6 References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.8 Une publication équivalente est disponible en français sous le titre suivant : Guide d’enseignement efficace de l’écriture, de la maternelle e à la 3 année.3. Shared Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.1 The Frequency of Shared Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.3 Roles and Responsibilities in Shared Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.4 Similarities and Differences in Shared and Interactive Writing . . . 3.5 Teaching Points . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.5 Sample Lessons Sample Shared Writing Lesson: Grade 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.6 References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.8 4. Interactive Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.1 The Frequency of Interactive Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.3 Roles and Responsibilities in Interactive Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.4 Teaching Points . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.5 Sample Lessons Sample Interactive Writing Lesson: Grade 1 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.6 References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.9 5. Guided Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.1 The Frequency of Guided Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3 Roles and Responsibilities in Guided Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.4 How Group Members Are Selected . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.4 Teaching Points . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.5 Activities for the Rest of the Class . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.5 Sample Lessons Sample Guided Writing Lesson: Grade 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.6 References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.9 6. Independent Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.1 The Frequency of Independent Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.4 Roles and Responsibilities in Independent Writing . . . . . . . . . . . 6.5 Independent Writing and the Writing Process . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.6 Sample Lessons Sample Independent Writing Lesson: Writing Workshop, Grade 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.7 Sample Independent Writing Lesson: Persuasive Writing, Grade 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.11 iv A Guide to Effective Instruction in Writing, Kindergarten to Grade 3Thumbnails of Appendices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.15 Appendix 6-1: Writing Workshop “Where We’re At” Chart Appendix 6-2: Writing Workshop “Where I’m At” Chart Appendix 6-3: Sample Writing Conference Record Appendix 6-4: Independent Writing Revising and Editing Checklist Appendix 6-5: Writing Self-Assessment Form Appendix 6-6: Persuasive Letter Planner Appendix 6-7: Persuasive Letter Revising and Editing Checklist References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6.18 7. Assessment and Evaluation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.1 Categories of Assessment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.4 Assessment Strategies and Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.4 Assessment Criteria . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.7 Exemplars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.8 Assessing Writing Across the Curriculum . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.8 Report Card Evaluation of Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.9 Thumbnails of Appendices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.10 Appendix 7-1: Writing Interview Form Appendix 7-2: Writing Skills Checklist Appendix 7-3: Portfolio Assessment Forms References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7.12 Glossary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . GL.1 Contents vPreface A Guide to Effective Instruction in Writing, Kindergarten to Grade 3, 2005 is designed to provide classroom teachers of Kindergarten to Grade 3 with practical approaches and resources for delivering an effective writing program. The document is intended to supplement A Guide to Effective Instruction in Reading, Kindergarten to Grade 3, 2003, published by the Ontario Ministry of Education. Research indicates that, because reading and writing are interdependent, students’ learning in one area supports their learning in the other. This guide complements and builds on material in the reading instruction guide, to help teachers plan programs that will enhance students’ overall literacy development. Organization and Features of This Guide This guide has seven chapters. Chapter 1 provides an overview of effective writing instruction. Subsequent chapters address the five key instructional approaches of an effective writing program: modelled writing, shared writing, interactive writing, guided writing, and independent writing A final chapter discusses assessment and evaluation. A glossary of terms used in this guide is provided at the end of the document. Supplemental appendices accompany several of the chapters. The appendices contain various kinds of information and tools intended for use with the teaching approaches and strategies outlined in the text. Thumbnail images of these appendices are provided in this guide; the full-sized versions can be downloaded from the eWorkshop website, at http://www.eworkshop.on.ca/resources/literacy. viiOverview of Effective Instruction 1. in Writing Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.3 Chapter Contents The Goals of Writing Instruction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.4 The Stages of Writing Development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.5 The Emergent Writer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.6 The Early Writer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.7 Developing Fluency . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.8 Student Attitudes Towards Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.9 Becoming an Effective Writer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.10 The Writing Process . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.11 The Elements of Writing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.14 Text Forms, Genres, and Formats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.20 Five Key Instructional Approaches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.22 Setting High Expectations for All Students . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.22 Teaching Writing to English As a Second Language/ English Literacy Development (ESL/ELD) Students . . . . . . . . . . 1.23 The Role of Technology in Writing Instruction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.23 Planning and Classroom Organization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.24 A Framework for Effective Early Writing Instruction . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.25 Thumbnails of Appendix . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.26 Appendix 1-1: Some Suggested Picture Books for Teaching the Elements of Writing References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1.27Overview of Effective Instruction in Writing Introduction Readers and writers are involved in similar activities. Readers create meaning for groups of words based on their knowledge and experiences. Writers take ideas, thoughts, and emotions and transfer them onto paper (or a computer screen) using their knowledge of language conventions and the writing process to create meaningful text. These activities are embedded in all aspects of the curriculum. Since both reading and writing focus on meaning, development in one reinforces progress in the other: students learn to read and write better “The interconnectedness when the two processes are linked. As in teaching reading, writing of reading and writing teachers use a balance of modelling, direct instruction, guided instruc- is profound and tion, and facilitation of students’ independent learning and practice. inescapable … Fragmenting these Critical literacy plays an important part in both reading and writing. complex literacy It encourages students to become actively engaged with the text as they processes interferes make connections to their prior knowledge, other texts, and the world with the greatest goal around them. It also encourages them to move beyond the text as they ask of literacy education – questions about the author’s purpose and make inferences, evaluations, the construction of and judgements. meaning from and through text. Using Writing is a powerful instrument for students to use to express their reading and writing thoughts, feelings, and judgements about what they have read, seen, together in harmonious or experienced. As students continue to develop an understanding concert enables learners of the writing process; the elements of writing; text forms, genres, to draw on these and formats; and technology, they are able to express themselves complementary more confidently and effectively. processes at the same Teachers use their professional judgement and careful observation in time as they work to order to provide explicit instruction that will support students as they construct meaning.” become effective writers. (Fountas and Pinnell, 2001, p. vi) Because of the interconnectedness of reading and writing, this guide builds on material already presented in A Guide to Effective Instruction in Reading, Overview of Effective Instruction in Writing 1.3Kindergarten to Grade 3 (Ontario Ministry of Education, 2003; This guide builds on material hereafter referred to as the Guide to Effective Instruction in Reading presented in A Guide to or, simply, the reading instruction guide). For example, Chapter 3, Effective Instruction in “Oral Language and Reading”, explains oral language development Reading, Kindergarten to and its relationship to reading and writing, while Chapter 10, Grade 3, 2003, which is often “The Role of Writing in Reading Instruction”, addresses the referred to in this document interrelatedness of reading and writing and provides specific simply as “the reading examples of ways in which writing supports reading and reading instruction guide”. supports writing. It is hoped that teachers will refer to these and other chapters in the reading instruction guide as they familiarize themselves with this writing guide. There are five key instructional approaches to writing – modelled writing, shared writing, interactive writing, guided writing, and independent writing – each of which forms the subject of a later chapter. Each approach provides opportunities for oral language instruction and practice, and each chapter contains one or more sample lessons that can be used for planning purposes or as a source of new ideas. First, however, this overview examines the understandings teachers must have to successfully deliver an effective writing program. Teachers need to understand the goals of writing instruction, the stages of development writers pass through, the strategies used by proficient or “good” writers, and the knowledge and skills students require to become effective writers. These understandings will guide teachers in establishing goals, planning programs, delivering instruction, and assessing student progress in ways that address the needs of all students. The Goals of Writing Instruction Writing instruction has four main goals for student achievement: 1. To write clearly and creatively to convey a message 2. To communicate ideas, thoughts, feelings, and experiences 3. To understand that writing is a reflective and interactive process 4. To understand the different purposes, audiences, and forms for writing To enable students to achieve these goals, teachers need to provide effective instruction in: • oral language skills; • activating prior knowledge and experience; • understanding audience, purpose, and form for writing; • understanding the writing process; • understanding the elements of writing; • applying higher-order thinking skills. 1.4 A Guide to Effective Instruction in Writing, Kindergarten to Grade 3To enable students to achieve these goals, every writing program should include: • a balance of direct instruction, guided instruction, and independent learning and student practice; • large-group, small-group, and individual instruction; discussion; and collaboration; • a variety of assessment and evaluation techniques, used to inform program planning and instruction; • an uninterrupted literacy block every day; • the integration of phonics and word study into reading, writing, and oral language activities; • the introduction of a variety of text forms, genres, formats, and electronic media; • authentic and motivating literacy experiences and learning activities; • activities and an environment that promote higher-order thinking skills; • guidance, coaching, and feedback for students; • interventions for students who are at risk of not developing literacy skills; • a supportive classroom culture and effective classroom organization and management; • parental and community involvement. The Stages of Writing Development All children come to school with a variety of print and oral language experiences, and teachers recognize and make accommodations for the differences among students when planning an effective writing program. A carefully planned program provides a meaningful context within which students can develop the skills and strategies needed to communicate ideas and information in writing. Program planning should begin by considering the three initial stages of writing development: emergent, early, and developing fluency. There are many examples of writing continua available in professional resources for teachers. The developmental continuum shown below, in the “Developmental Stages” graph, is one example. Students do not develop their writing skills evenly from Developmental Stages stage to stage. There is considerable overlap from one stage Developing to the next. It is common for developing writers to exhibit EmergentEarly Fluency behaviours from more than one stage of development. K 1 The three charts provided on the following pages outline 1 the main indicators of students’ understanding of writing, 2 and their interest and ability in writing, at each stage of development. Accompanying each indicator is a suggested 3 teaching approach that will best support student progress in that particular aspect of writing. 1. Adapted from Toronto District School Board, 2000, Appendix, pp. 69–70. Overview of Effective Instruction in Writing 1.5The Emergent Writer Emergent writers learn that their oral language can be recorded in print. They develop an understanding that writing is used to communicate a message. They imitate adult writing by using pictures, symbols, and some conventional letters. The Emergent Stage The student: The teacher: • understands that writing records a personal • uses modelled, shared, and interactive writing message; to record students’ ideas on a classroom chart during discussions, sharing time, and the morning • understands that writing is a form of communi- message (e.g., sending notes to the principal, cation and conveys a meaningful message; making shopping lists for the house centre, • progresses to writing a simple message using a recording recipes); combination of pictures, symbols, and letters; • models a variety of ways of message making (e.g., environmental print, classroom labels, morning message, shared writing, sentence strips) to help students understand that meaning can be conveyed in a variety of forms; • begins to use the conventions of oral language • models correct oral language structures, and (often with a tendency to overapply newly rephrases grammatically incorrect responses from learned conventions), while progressing from students (e.g., Student says, “I goed to the store.” simple descriptions to retelling events and Teacher responds, “You went to the store.”); explaining ideas; • demonstrates interest in playing at “writing” • provides an inviting environment and a variety and willingness to do so; of tools and media for student writing; • develops the understanding that illustration • demonstrates through read-alouds the difference and writing are different, and progresses from between illustrations and print, and reinforces scribble writing to letter approximations to these concepts through modelled and interactive conventional letters and spaces, with few or writing, using an alphabet picture chart and no attempts at punctuation; magnetic letters; • progresses from demonstrating beginning • uses a “think-aloud” strategy, during modelled awareness of directionality to using left to right, reading of a big book, to demonstrate that the top to bottom (i.e., concepts of print); text is read from left to right and from top to bottom; • progresses from using symbols representing • engages in phonemic awareness activities and print to spelling words with one or more letters, models how sound awareness translates to print. with a focus on letters representing the sounds of consonants (e.g., his/her own name, and high-frequency words such as “mom”, “I”, and “to”). 1.6 A Guide to Effective Instruction in Writing, Kindergarten to Grade 3The Early Writer Early writers are developing a greater understanding of the concepts of print. They begin to understand some purposes for writing and to use some basic writing forms. They express their ideas in simple sentences, often using invented spelling. The Early Stage The student: The teacher: • understands that writing is a way to preserve • encourages students to share their journal thoughts and information; writing, create books for the classroom library, write notes and cards, and so on; • demonstrates awareness that oral language • provides classroom experiences that enrich oral needs to be grammatically accurate, and is able language; to self-correct, using specific vocabulary to suit different purposes (e.g., for description, compari- son, and higher-order thinking); • demonstrates enjoyment of and continued • provides opportunities for students to communi- interest in writing; cate in personally meaningful ways; • represents words with conventional letters and • demonstrates, during modelled writing, how spaces in simple sentences, and attempts to language works (e.g., letters, words, spaces, use some punctuation in written language; sentences), using the think-aloud process; • in an interactive writing lesson, gives students the opportunity to participate in the writing; • progresses from demonstrating awareness of • models and shares the writing process, using basic print concepts to first steps in planning, graphic organizers (e.g., story web, story plan) revising, and editing; to plan a story and write a first draft; • in subsequent modelled and shared writing lessons, gives students the opportunity to revise and edit the first draft; • understands some purposes for and forms of • through shared and guided writing, introduces writing, and uses basic sentence structures to the elements of writing and coaches students communicate ideas; on how to select the appropriate form to suit a specific purpose for writing; • chooses letters to represent all dominant sounds • through modelled, shared, and guided writing, in a word, often using invented spelling as well demonstrates and engages students in the use as conventional spelling of some high-frequency of strategies and resources that support the words. learning of spelling (e.g., sound/symbol relationships, word walls, theme word displays, personal dictionaries). Overview of Effective Instruction in Writing 1.7Developing Fluency During this stage of writing development, children write for a variety of purposes, using forms appropriate for their audience. They follow the steps of the writing process, use a variety of spelling strategies, and group sentences into paragraphs. The Stage of Developing Fluency The student: The teacher: • understands that writing is an essential part of • demonstrates, through think-alouds and model- one’s life in order to communicate and satisfy ling, that writers write for a purpose, consider the personal and academic needs; audience, and choose the appropriate form; • recognizes that oral language needs to be • during think-alouds, models alternative oral adapted for specific purposes, and communicates language structures and a variety of vocabulary; messages for a variety of activities and events; • continues to enjoy writing, and understands that • provides materials and opportunities (e.g., time writing can be used for a variety of purposes; to read quality books and talk to peers about writing ideas) to support student self-expression (e.g., point of view, reflection, personal experience); • writes a variety of sentences and paragraphs, • works with small groups in guided writing to using appropriate punctuation; support student acquisition of writing strategies; • provides opportunities for students to reinforce, practise, and apply writing strategies during independent writing; • uses a range of strategies for planning, revising, • through guided and independent writing, supports editing, and publishing written text; students as they develop and implement strategies aligned with the writing process (e.g., graphic organizers, editing checklists, peer revision); • uses appropriate vocabulary and a range of text • may facilitate fluent writing through writing forms to suit purpose and audience; workshops and/or individual student conferences with an emphasis on the writing process and the • writes a variety of simple and complex sentences elements of writing; grouped into paragraphs; • uses letters to represent all sounds, and begins to • provides daily opportunities for students to apply use a variety of spelling strategies (e.g., visual spelling strategies in a meaningful context. and sound patterns, context, spelling resources such as dictionaries). 1.8 A Guide to Effective Instruction in Writing, Kindergarten to Grade 3Student Attitudes Towards Writing As students develop as writers, they gain not only greater proficiency in writing but also greater understanding of what effective writers do. Teachers may choose to generate a list of “What Good Writers Do”, “What Good Editors Do”, or “What Good Spellers Do” with their class. A student-generated list can be used as a way for teachers to discover their students’ attitudes towards writing, and towards themselves as writers. It can also highlight any gaps in students’ awareness of the qualities of an effective writer, editor, or speller. The teacher can address these gaps through minilessons or other instructional strategies. These lists are not prescriptive or exhaustive. They are used as a means to focus on writing and to “remind” students that they do not necessarily have to be a proficient speller to be an effective writer, and vice versa. It is possible that some qualities will fit under more than one heading. These lists should be considered within the broader context of student development. It is assumed that a Kindergarten student will not be performing nor be expected to perform at the same level as a student in Grade 3; therefore, not all of the points below will apply to all students. Samples of Student-Generated Lists What Do Good Writers Do? What Do Good Editors Do? What Do Good Spellers Do? • Like to write • Use capital letters • Read a lot • Write about things they know • Check their punctuation • Write a lot about or are interested in • Check their spelling • Look for patterns • Draw and “talk out” their story • Know many high-frequency • Use complete sentences words (rehearsal) • Write legibly • Know if a word looks right • Decide whom they are writing • Use interesting words for and what their writing will • Listen for sounds they hear • Let somebody else read their look like • Know where to look to find story • Share their writing with a a hard word (e.g., word wall, partner, a conference group, dictionaries) or the teacher • Take a risk • Read their first draft and ask, “Does it look right? Does it sound right? Does it make sense?” Overview of Effective Instruction in Writing 1.9Becoming an Effective Writer “Writing is a complex process that involves a range of skills and tasks. Although writing is often used to clarify and express personal thoughts and feelings, it is used primarily to communicate with others. Students need to become disciplined thinkers in order to communicate their ideas clearly and effectively. They need to learn to select and organize their ideas, keeping in mind the purpose for which they are writing and the audience they are addressing. They also need to learn to use standard written forms and other conventions of language.” (Ontario Ministry of Education and Training, 1997, p. 11) The writing process is the means by which students learn how to approach and carry out a writing task. The elements of writing provide teachers and students with the concepts and terminology necessary to understand and talk about the process and products of writing. An understanding of the forms of writing, which include genres and formats, and practice in identifying the purpose and audience for their writing enable students to select the most appropriate form to communicate their ideas and feelings. Students’ developing understanding of the writing process provides them with the tools they need to express themselves effectively and to reach their target audience. Through direct instruction, teachers provide students with an understanding of how different aspects of a piece of writing – including planning, writing a draft, revising, editing, and publishing – all relate to one another. Effective writers make connections to prior knowledge, other texts, and the world around them as they craft their writing. As they write, students ask themselves: • “Did I say everything that I wanted to say?” • “Does my plan for writing reflect my thinking and ideas?” • “Did I listen to my teacher or peer in order to make effective revisions?” The writing process, the elements of writing, and the forms of writing underpin the five key instructional approaches presented in this guide. These aspects of writing are interconnected, but they may be taught in isolation for a particular purpose – for example, in a minilesson devised to address a specific need – and then quickly integrated back into the literacy block. 1.10 A Guide to Effective Instruction in Writing, Kindergarten to Grade 3The Writing Process The writing process teaches students how to develop their ideas and record them in written form. The process involves the following distinct steps: • Planning • Writing a draft • Revising • Editing • Publishing Each stage of the writing process is important and needs to be explicitly taught. The writing process can be taught in sequence, but it is also important to help students understand that writers go back and forth between the steps as they write. Some writing is never taken to completion. All students, regardless of their stage of development as writers, are introduced to the writing process through modelled and shared instruction. Students in Kindergarten to Grade 3 participate in different aspects of a balanced writing program, depending on their stage of development. Each student will engage in the writing process at his or her own level – for example, a Kindergarten student might label a group picture during shared writing. Talk is an integral part Teacher and peer conferences play an important role in the writing of the writing process. process and are discussed below in the sections on revising and editing. Students are given the opportunity to talk to Teachers need to model all aspects of the writing process many times so each other in order to that students become familiar with each stage. This will enable students expand their ideas and/or make improvements in to participate in the writing process with understanding and confidence. their writing. Planning The first step of the writing process, sometimes referred to as “rehearsal”, results in a plan to guide students as they write. Students generate ideas based on prior knowledge or personal experience. They may be prompted to visualize or draw their story and then tell a friend. After brainstorming with other students, they evaluate their ideas, narrow their focus, and select a topic. Some students may be provided with a generic graphic organizer. As students create a plan, they need to consider why they are writing (the purpose), and who will read what they write (the audience). At this point, students may determine the form their writing will take. Overview of Effective Instruction in Writing 1.11