Sunday, June 28, 2009

A Quick Guide Series by Heinemann

When I was in Saline, MI a few weeks ago, I decided to buy a few books ( of course) during the conference.   Franki previewed for me a few of these Quick Guides from the Lucy Calkins series a month or two ago.  I felt like it was a good time to give them a try.  These new "little books" caught my eye.  I really liked the small size (fits easily in my purse) of the book and the enormous amount of information I read in 75 pages.  I also liked the $10 price.

The books I purchased in the series are Teaching Second Grade Writers and Persuasive Writing K-2.  I have read the first of these two on the go over the past few weeks when 
I have down time at baseball games,  minutes waiting for the kids to finish up soccer camp or just when I have a quick few moments to myself during the day.  

I was very happy with some of the ideas that the Second Grade Writer's Book has to offer. I think it will be another tool in my tool belt for supporting writers.  It won't be my end all but just a good reference to pop back to if I need to during the year.  It has helped me think about units of writing I will plan for my students next year as well.  My favorite part of Lucy's writing is when she uses questions.  I feel like questions are always smart to write for teachers because with student writers there often is never an "answer" per say.   Questions guide writers to independently (sometimes) take the next step.  I liked these questions: 
How do I want listeners to feel about my writing?
What did the author do that I can try?
Help me picture that? Can you say more about that?
What ideas does this story spark in me?
Where in the story does the main character have the biggest feelings?

These little books (5X7 inches) are packed full of learning!!


Karen said...

interesting concept... did Calkins have books for upper elem. as well?

katied said...

The others that I am familiar with are Making your teaching stick, k-5. Reaching struggling writers K-5. These were the only titles I noticed for upper elementary.