This is a piece Linda wrote for the summer institute in the Greater Kansas City Writing Project.  Participants wrote about food that is important to them in some way.  Some of the participants had nicknamed Linda Wonder Woman during the SI.   Before my mother discovered she could communicate important family information by texting all […]

After students practice reading like a writer to create anchor charts for elements of flash fiction,  it’s time to apply their learning to new texts.  Again, I like providing several text selections so students have choice, but this time, I give students a very brief text chat, a shorter version of a book talk, and let […]

I was introduced to the concept of invitational groups when Ellin Keene first worked with our middle school ELA team.  Our school had completed a book study of Mosaic of Thought, but it wasn’t until Ellin led a demonstration lesson in a colleague’s classroom that I started to understand the power of the invitational group.  While […]

A few years ago, our state standards added fiction (Why fiction?) under the narrative mode strands, and in my roles as ELA teacher and instructional coach, I began a hunt for lesson ideas, resources, and research to share with my ELA team.  After all, for most of my career, teaching students to write fiction was […]

We have all read the research about the benefits of reading fiction, but isn’t writing fiction a task for the few talented, creative people in the world who will make their living writing novels or children’s books? Most every English language arts teacher has either heard this question or has posed this question. Many ELA teachers I know […]