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July 21, 2012

Word Work and Work on Writing

As you know I've been reading Daily 5 in preparation for this coming year. Chapter 6 was about Word Work and Work on Writing. I just wanted to share what I did for these choices in my classroom last year, and what I've prepared for this coming year.  If you want to see my past Daily 5 posts, just look in the Labels area - Daily 5 is there for you to click on. 

Word Work
To be honest last year when I first read the book I didn't think my big kids were small enough to need Word Work. I changed my mind when I started realizing all the different words they encounter and learn throughout the day and week. Here are the types of activities that I did:
Vocabulary games using the glossary and thesaurus
Spelling games using our spelling words
Spelling pattern games (weekly pattern)
Vocabulary of the Day (Ladybug's idea)
Mad libs
Grammar games on a specific concept
Computer games- Internet 4 Classrooms

Work on Writing
On Mondays my class usually begins the weekly writing assignment.  We go through the brainstorm together on that day, and then the kids start on the rough draft themselves and go through the process the rest of the week.  I usually take my writing assignments from what we are learning in Social Studies, Science, the Reading unit, or Holidays.  For Work on Writing, my students have to work on the assigned topic, but once it's completed they have choices of topics.  
(This was my bulletin board from last year - it will be different this time around.)

I set up a VOICES board with the different skills that we learn together, and we create a "Heart Map" of their interests.  I also have used option dice and picture prompts that they choose from to write.  Then there is also the Whole Class Journals that they enjoy writing and reading with.  They also have the choice to "Fill Someone's Bucket" with an encouragement note or compliment.
  It keeps them happy and writing!

VOICES in my class equals
Voice - Author's Purpose, Point of View
Organization - Different types of writing
Ideas - Interests and Heart Maps
Conventions - Capitals, Punctuation, Indents, and Spelling
Excellent Words - Vocabulary, Adjectives, Details
Sentence Fluency - Use different ways to start sentences, does the sentence make sense?  

What I'm adding for this year?
This summer I created a Boggle Board to keep them spelling, and have printed out Word Games from Tara at 4th Grade Frolics.  She has an entire page dedicated to everything Daily 5 related.  I created a Journal Jar, but as of yet I haven't printed off any journal prompts to go inside.  I'm planning on handing out slips of paper to my students that first week back, and have them think of one or two words to write on the slips before they stick them into the jar.  Just thought that having them create the papers might make them more interested in using the jar to see what else someone thought of.  To make my Journal Jar I used a Pub Mix container from Costco.  We have quite of few of those handy since my boys are addicted to it!  It's large and with a dicut stuck on the front it was very easy to pull together.  I think washing it out took the longest amount of time.  
Hope this helps someone!


  1. I love the Words With Friends board. I bet I could make it magnetic to use on a bulletin board. I'm going to think about that! Love your blog, BTW!

    1. Thank you so much for visiting me. :) I wish I had an extra 100 number pocket chart - or that I had saved mine from my primary days. It would have been perfect for this!


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