Workshop Wednesday - K.I.S.S.

I am so happy to be linking up with Jivey again this week for her weekly linky party.

This week's theme - motivating your students to write!

Here is my advice: K.I.S.S.  - Keep It Short 4 Success

I like to start off the year and each unit with short writing assignments - the purpose of course is so that students experience success right away with their writing and are then motivated to try writing longer pieces.

In September we do lots of list writing. One of my favorites and the students too, is to listen to the song "I Don't Like" by the Barenaked Ladies (from their kids CD Snacktime - which you have to get!). Afterwards they make a list of all the things they don't like. That's it for the first day - very short. Then we choose 1 thing and explain why we don't like it. We write 2 sentences explaining why we don't like it. That's it, still very short. Repeat a couple of times and voila - you have written a masterpiece!!

We often write only story starters or story endings - to practice certain types of hooks and endings.

We write on sticky notes - all kinds and sizes of sticky notes.

When writing procedures we start with super simple and short instructions!

When starting letter writing we write postcards and mail them!

I also use these magnets, cards and foam blocks as writing prompts. We pull out a few and students have to use the words or ideas in a sentence or two. Then we stop and share. Then we pull out more. Some of the ideas they need to put together can lend themselves to silliness and since we share our writing they are very motivated to write something they are proud to share.

As we wind down the year I am interested to hear how other teachers motivate their students - we can use all the help we can get!!


  1. These are great- ya know, I can think of lots of other things K.I.S.S. can stand for. ;-) Thank you for linking up your awesome ideas! :) I love the idea of mailing their postcard!
    ideas by jivey

  2. I love the magnets and story cubes...looks like so much fun!

    :) Kaitlyn
    Smiles and Sunshine

  3. My students love designing and writing postcards. Great idea to actually mail them. I am finding great ideas through this linky! Thanks for sharing!

  4. I think it is so important to start small, just like you do. You share some great ideas! Thanks so much!

    Mrs. Laffin's Laughings

  5. I like all those "small" writings, perfect to elaborate or expand when they become better writers. I love when they have a "bank" of ideas to revise or edit later. Thanks for sharing!
    Head Over Heels For Teaching

  6. I've been motivating my students by allowing them to make the choice for the form they are going to write in as opposed to having the whole class focus on one form e.g. persuasive. They love having the independence to be able to choose their form.

    I am your newest follower!


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