Emmett is just now working on writing complete sentences about a topic. He is on his way to becoming a great writer. Being a boy, he has a lot going against him due to the stereotype that boys HATE to write! In my opinion, it is all in how you teach it. The motivation and desire comes naturally if it is encouraged. Unfortunately, the method described here is so difficult to implement in a large classroom setting. I know all too well from my experience in teaching in a public school with 28 first graders in my class with no aide. The one-on-one instruction is priceless. Not a day goes by the I don't think about the treasure I have in my home to be able to sit with my children one-on-one!
I have taught several students and have been trained in teaching the IEW writing method. Click here for IEW Andrew Pudewa is my hero when it comes to teaching writing. I only wish I learned his method when I was in grade school. If so, I may not have been doomed to earn a C grade for almost every piece of writing I produced in college! I take his key word outlining technique and apply it to Emmett's writing. It is pure genius to me. It takes away the "blank page" issue that so often frustrates young writers into anxiety and stress about producing a written product from their thoughts and imagination. Here is how I apply it...
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Emmett's picture of his cars and blocks structure that he set up in his bedroom.
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"I made a block tower for my cars. The last tower I built didn't have a roof..."
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"...because I ran out of blocks before I even finished."
Thanks to this lesson, we have yet ONE more thing to put on Emmett's wish list from Santa. He informed me that he will be asking Santa for MORE blocks so he can finish his parking garage. :)