A girls hand writing in a journal with the overlaid text "TED Talks to inspire Young Writers"

TED Talks for Young Writers

Have you ever used videos to inspire your students to write? Here are some TED talks for young writers you’ll be able to use at different moments in your curriculum. As I‘ve mentioned before on this blog, I love the Writer‘s Workshop model! Each day includes a focusing mini-lesson, time to write and ponder, and time to share or conference. Videos can be an excellent opportunity for students to choose a concept they’ll focus on in their writing that day.   TED Talks for Young Writers   Nnedi Okorafor – Sci-fi stories that imagine a future Africa (9:21) Nigerian-American author Nnedi Okorafor didn’t grow up reading science fiction. As a child, she says, it didn’t appeal to her. She wasn’t able to ‘see’ herself in the characters. But now, by writing Afro-futuristic science fiction, she

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Do you want to host a classroom author chat? It’s a great way to get your students invested in reading and writing. They can see the real-world person behind the work, learn about an author’s craft, and ask their most pressing questions as a reader. (Read more at the blog)

Host a Classroom Author Chat

How would you like to chat with an author whose work you love? Well, your students definitely would, too! Setting up a classroom Author Chat seems like a daunting, impossible task, but I’m here to tell you that it’s TOTALLY POSSIBLE. With a little boldness, you can make your dreams for a classroom Author Chat a reality! Last year, my students chatted with Suzanne Young (author of The Program series, Hotel Ruby, and many more!) and Betsy Cornwell (author of Mechanica, Tides, and the brand new Venturess!), and loved these experiences. How did I make that happen for them? I’m here today to tell you how to pull off a classroom Author Chat in five quick steps. [Note: I’ve loved these books, and so will you! If you decide to make a purchase, please consider

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A photo of a woman's hands with yellow fingernail polish, she is holding a pen over an empty notebook. There is a a white border at the top of the image with pink and blue text that says "Writer's Workshop for Short Stories"

Host a Classroom Writer’s Workshop in 5 Easy Steps

Last fall, I did a Writer’s Workshop with my 9th graders to help them write their own short stories. We did this as part of our Dystopian unit, but the process works with any genre. In this post, I’ll cover the Writer’s Workshop process in my classroom, how I manage the reading load, and things I am still trying to improve. First of all, I combined my Writer’s Workshop with Dystopian Lit Circles last year and basically designed the unit to be a reading/discussion day and then a writing day. I thought I was breaking it up for the students and that they’d appreciate the break, but they told me that they felt like they couldn’t completely focus on one or the other. I think the solution would be to have students mostly finished with

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