Inside Writing Communities, Grades 3-5 features 16 30-minute videos designed to stand alone or be viewed as a whole. If you are taking this workshop for credit, you must view all 16 programs. You can watch each video in its entirety, or watch it in segments as you take the corresponding workshop. The videos are designed to be viewed in pairs consecutively.
The first video explores how teachers in grades 3-5 create classrooms that nurture and support the writing confidence of all students and help them forge unique writing identities. It relies on narration, interviews with literacy experts, and multiple classroom illustrations to communicate and support the learning goals identified for the workshop. The instructional content of these videos will be reinforced by the reading assignments, pre-workshop activities, and discussion questions posted on the Web site.
The second video is built into the latter part of the two-and-one-half hour workshop. These videos feature extended classroom applications narrated exclusively by the teachers themselves along with commentary from literacy experts. The focus of the second video is narrowed to one or two subtopics introduced in the first video.
Video 1: Building a Community of Writers
How can teachers in grades 3-5 create classrooms that nurture and support the writing confidence of all students and help them forge unique writing identities? This video explores how teachers at different grade levels and in different settings establish a successful writing community in their classrooms.
Video 2: Teacher as Writer
This program showcases a third-grade teacher sharing her writing with her students and reflecting on the experience as it relates to her as a writer and as a teacher. The program also features other teachers who build community in their classrooms through modeling and sharing their own writing.
Video 3: Reasons for Writing
This video examines practices that motivate students to write: allowing them to choose topics and make writing decisions, having them keep a writer's notebook in which to record their thoughts, and making sure that they have authentic audiences for their writing.
Video 4: Fostering Choice and Independence
This program explores how teachers help students develop into independent, motivated writers, including what happens during the first two days of a third-grade class when the teacher sets up the writing workshop, and a fifth-grade teacher's status-of-the-class activity, a tool for keeping track of each writer's progress.
Video 5: Reading Like a Writer
This video examines the relationship between reading and writing in the elementary classroom, demonstrating specific ways in which reading inspires students and helps them learn the craft of writing.
Video 6: Reading/Writing Connections
Through interviews and classroom footage, this program explores how teachers in the third, fourth, and fifth grades incorporate published authors into their writing instruction.
Video 7: Teaching the Writing Craft
This program explores the role of whole-class instruction in the writing workshop: how teachers decide when to use whole-class lessons and how they integrate them into the overall workshop structure.
Video 8: Teaching a Specific Writing Strategy
This video documents how lessons on particular writing skills unfold over multiple days, including how a fifth-grade teacher introduces and elaborates on a new revision strategy for her students.
Video 9: Conversations With Student Writers
This program demonstrates how teachers incorporate informal conferences into their writing instruction, how they structure conferences, and how they keep records of their interactions. The emphasis is on practical strategies and on the fundamental benefit of responding personally to student writing.
Video 10: Teacher-Student Conferences
This video features student/teacher conferences from two third-grades and one fifth grade all of which demonstrate how teachers help meet individual needs while insuring that students retain ownership of their work.
Video 11: Conversations Among Writing Peers
This program examines how teachers help students respond effectively to their peers by modeling appropriate behavior and teaching protocols for student responses.
Video 12: Peer Conferences
This program illustrates how a teacher introduces a peer conference protocol to her third-graders, and how fifth-graders use another peer conferencing strategy to help them revise personal narratives.
Video 13: Learning To Revise
For elementary-age children, revision is often new and challenging. This video shows how teachers overcome students' resistance to changing their writing by providing them with concrete, effective revision strategies.
Video 14: Modeling Revision
Using a paragraph based on her own research notes, the teacher models the thinking and decision making that takes place in a writer's mind during revision.
Video 15: Writing Across the Curriculum
This video explores various ways writing can be incorporated into other subject areas and how content from other subjects can be incorporated into a writing workshop. It includes examples from several classrooms.
Video 16: Writing in Science
This program features an extended example of authentic writing in a fifth-grade science class: recording observations about chicken bones as part of a lesson on anatomy.
To help you get the most out of the video programs, use the questions for reflection provided in each workshop as you watch.
If you have access to a high-speed Internet connection, you can view the video programs online. If you do not have access to a high-speed connection, watch the video programs on the Annenberg/CPB Channel (see the broadcast schedule), record them from the Channel to view at a more convenient time, or purchase the videos at www.learner.org or by calling 1-800-LEARNER.