Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Writer's Notebook Cheat Sheet: How to Turn Writing-Phobic Students into Writing Machines - Part 2

I have a confession to make. I'm a sucker for cheat sheets.

I think of them as personal consultants who keep me up to speed on topics I should know about - but don’t.

I've actually memorized key points from them so I’d be able to contribute something to discussions on district issues or educational trends.

Shameless, I know. But in a pinch, they're lifesavers!

Of course, I don't wave them around or distribute copies of them to my colleagues. I just stash a few away in some easily-accessible spot so I can sneak a peek at them whenever I need some quick reminders or when I need to get the gist of something I didn't have time to study (sorta like the small collection of CliffsNotes which I never admitted to using in college).

I justify my addiction to them by creating my own cheat sheets on topics I’m truly passionate about. The ones I spend months researching until I'm satisfied that I've consumed every morsel of information I can find - because my interest in those topics is insatiable.

This makes me feel as if I’m part of a caring, sharing community of cheat-sheet-creating experts. And that makes me happy. 

So please grab a free copy of my Writer's Notebook cheat sheet and add it to your stash if you have one. If you don't, what are you waiting for? You can start that collection right now. You'll be hooked once you see how addictive  useful they can be. 

Here's a short video (another way to grab info on the fly) which demonstrates how to set up Writers' Notebooks and how to use them to improve writing proficiencies. 

Hmmm...maybe I should have called this post The Cheater's Guide to Writer's Notebook.

If you'd like to see some completed notebook pages, check out the first post in this series How I Turned Writing-Phobic Students into Writing Machines (or How Ralph Fletcher Rocked My World) Part 1.

The next post in the Writer's Notebook series will be dedicated to the Collection Section.

Here's a sneak peek at what you'll find there:
  • How to take multi-genre collections from the pre-writing to the publishing stages of Writer's Workshop,
  • How to use the collection section of the notebook as reference pages and pre-writing tools, and
  • How to access three free collections that you can test drive in your classroom.

Until next time…stay committed…teach with passion…and inspire students with who you are.

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