Flint High School Writers


August 31, 2009
Presenters: Liz Webb, Yolanda Jackson, and Sharon Murchie

1] 8:15 - 8:45 Introductions and handout books (Thumb through the books -- glance perhaps at Jin Burke's Writing Reminders, (perhaps p 82 or pp 179-180 and/or the grid on page 5 of How to Give Effective Feedback to Your Students by Susan Brookhart). We'll return to the books later today.
  • Provide e-mail address and submit (so that you may be invited to the wiki)
  • Fill out nametag
  • Get your ticket!
  • Explain PQS strategy (handout)

2] 8:45 - 9:00 Topic: Struggling Writers
  • Writing prompt: A time when I struggled to learn something.... How did I react to this? Was my reaction positive or negative?
  • To write this, go to the discussion tab in the middle at the top of this page.
  • Click on the tab that says "Struggling to Learn Something New."
  • Write about this topic for ten minutes.
  • When done, read the responses posted by others. Use the PQS strategy and respond to someone's idea.

3] 9:00 - 9:15 Large Group discussion: What are the implications for the classroom?
  1. Learning is a process; we're always struggling and we learn coping mechanisms. We are just like our students in this.
  2. We are predominantly linguistic learners in here and we've written a lot about struggling in math. That's how our students feel.
  3. The non-verbal or shy kid might respond more in this type of response
  4. Typing or computing helps those with mechanical distractions
  5. This brings frustration; limitations in technology implementation is a common theme
  6. Implications of this type of responding are exciting
  7. We don't often have the technology support that we need
  8. We need to discuss how to advocate for ourselves and technology access


4] 9:15 - 9:30 Presentation of Brian Cambourne's "Conditions for Learning" with "Parking Lot" strategy



5] 9:30 - 9:45 Teachley's "Amazing Brain"
  • 5 minutes to explore the interactive amazing brain.
  • Share with a partner the implications of one or two of the facts (3 minutes)
  • 5 minute ticket share: Report ideas back to the large group. How can this information be used in our classrooms?

6] 9:45 - 10:15 Differentiated Instruction
  • 5 minutes to read the handout
  • In groups of three by grade, talk about a unit you teach that you could modify based on the information presented. What is the unit? What and how can it be differentiated? What are the implications of this information for our classrooms, instruction, and student engagement?
  • 5 minute ticket share: Report ideas back to the large group.

7] 10:15 - 10:30 Break

From Theory to Practice

8] 10:30 - 11:30 Building a Learning Community
  • 10 minutes: discuss the principals of building a learning community
  • 10 minutes: read poem and template
  • 20 minutes to write
  • 10 minutes on "fishbowl" strategy
  • 10 minutes to fishbowl

9] 11:30 - 12:00 Writing Reminders
  • 10 minutes: In groups of 2 or 3, pick a chapter and read it.
  • 10 minutes: Discuss what you really loved (or really hated) in the chapter you read. What got your interest?
  • 10 minute ticket share

10] 12:00 - 12:30 Lunch

11] 12:30 Reflection: What did we do this morning that was an example of one of Cambourne's "Conditions for Learning"? Add to appropriate "parking lot".
Using Technology to Differentiate Instruction and Provide Writing Opportunities For Struggling Writers

12] 12:45 - 1:15 Wordle
  • Tutorial
  • Make your own


13] 1:15 - 1:30 Brainyflix
  • Tutorial

14] 1:30 - 2:45 Wikis
  • Wikis as a classroom webpage - Yolanda Jackson's classroom wiki
  • Choose a writing prompt from www.writingfix.com and post your writing on your personal wikipage.
  • Techie extention challenge: post a picture, link, or video to your personal wikipage.
  • Break on your own when necessary.

15] 2:45 - 3:00 Reflections and wrap up
  • Under discussion tap on this page, post your reflections on the day.

Homework: Bring in a favorite object that has meaning to you.