By Teachers, For Teachers
The writing process is an approach to writing that entails five main components: Pre-writing, drafting, revising and editing, rewriting, and, finally, publishing. Teachers use a combination of instruction, modeling, and conferencing, along with a few other teaching strategies, to teach students the writing process. The secret to effectively implementing the writing process is to do it in steps, it is a process nonetheless.
Here are a few teaching strategies to implementing the writing process into your classroom so you can help students become proficient writers.
This first phase of the writing process, the planning phase, is the brainstorming phase. Students can use graphic organizers, drawing, pictures, or lists to help them during this stage. This prewriting stage helps students focus their thoughts. It’s a good time for students to narrow or expand what they will be writing about. This beginning stage is a great time for students to organize their thoughts onto paper.
The drafting stage is the next step in the writing process. During this stage, students use the information from the prewriting stage and craft it into a rough draft. The goal is for students to take the jumbled thoughts that they had brainstormed and put it into actual sentences. This is the stage in which students do not have to worry about spelling, grammar, or any punctuation. They are free to expand their thoughts into fluent sentences that make sense. Peer conferences or informal conferences with the teacher can begin at this stage to help the student get feedback on their writing piece.
The next step is the revising and editing phase of the writing process. Students look at their main idea or concept and develop their topic even more, or add and/or delete information. They also look at their sentence structure and make sure it flows. They can add transition words and switch paragraphs to make sense. Students look at their piece to make sure they have a clear voice, as well as adding verbs and phrases to expand their topic. They look at their writing piece and edit it for any errors of grammar, spelling, punctuation, writing mechanics, and so on. This is one of the most important stages in the writing process. This step takes a lot of time and usually requires a peer or teacher to help.
This is the second draft phase, where students incorporate their edits and revisions into a rough draft. Students need to be mindful and careful when rewriting their draft so they don’t leave any new changes out.
The last step in the writing process is the publishing phase. This can be done by allowing students to type their final piece, or make it into a book, or even a newspaper. This is the fun part where students get to see all of their hard work in print. Make sure to showcase a student’s final accomplishments by putting them up on a bulletin board, or hanging them in the hallway for all to see. Having an audience puts more of an importance of the writing piece. When students know that everyone will see what they have written, they will work that much harder.
Studies have shown that students who learn the writing process score better on tests. It also helps students to apply the skills that they learn to all subjects. You can help your students by guiding them through the writing process throughout the school year. By the end of the year, your students should have mastered this process.
Do you have any tips to implementing the writing process? Please share your tips with us in the comment section below, we would love to hear your ideas.
Janelle Cox is an education writer who uses her experience and knowledge to provide creative and original writing in the field of education. Janelle holds a master's of science in education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is also the elementary education expert for About.com, as well as a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com and TeachHUB Magazine. You can follow her at Twitter @Empoweringk6ed, on Facebook at Empowering K6 Educators, or visit her website at Empoweringk6educators.