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Anyone ready to discuss 6+1 Traits book?
Old 07-16-2010, 09:44 AM
 
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At the end of May, there was a thread that mentioned havinf a discussion about the book 6 + 1 Traits. I was wondering if anyone has had the time to finish reading the book and I'm curious to hear opinions. Also, has anyone started working on their plans to teach the traits during writing workshop this fall. Thanks for your input


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6+1 Traits book talk...
Old 07-20-2010, 04:34 AM
 
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I wasn't in the May thread, but I am reading the book right now. I'm just finishing ch.3 about ideas. I like how the lessons make the idea trait concrete for young learners. The student scoring guide might be something to laminate so that the students could refer back to it often.
I am trying to map out my ww for the whole year using lessons from the book and lessons from a 6 traits site. I teach 2nd grade in OH. I also use Daily 5 and Cafe during my literacy block. I will need to have some writing grades, so I am wondering how that will mesh with this approach. I hope others will join this discussion!
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Yes
Old 07-20-2010, 06:32 AM
 
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I read most of the book last week and I have just a few more to read this week, but I would love to start. So far it seems similar to what I have been doing without calling it traits and making a b-board. I like how the kids have their own assessment tool. I teach grade one- so I will use the self assessments when they are ready. I too will laminate it and post 3 copies around the room. I too use Daily 5 and Cafe. I limit my round choices to 6 kids at each choice so having three copies posted I envision a group "Revising with Someone" where they can go and give constructive advice. I am thinking of having 3 Writer/Revising 3 ring binders available for the kids to use and return. I will also copy and place a sheet in their writing folder. I may need to purchase folders with the three prongs to include page protectors to slip in assessment tools and writing tools as needed.
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Shaping Organization
Old 07-22-2010, 06:43 AM
 
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Wow. I just finished chapter 4. I like the wording, "Brilliant/bold beginnings, mighty middles, and excellent endings." This common language will help define our writing expectations. The focus lesson "Ring of Leads" really makes sense to me! I will do this one as well as the "Endings That Work" lesson. I'm thinking their writing will soar! We will also be more mindful about author's organization during our read alouds. I do have one question about assessing student work. I'm wondering if , for example, a student can score a 2 for some of the trait criteria and a 3 for some? The paper #3 on page 110 seems to be a 2 for transitions instead of a 3 since the sentence parts aren't linked with conjunctions. So, as a teacher, I would focus on transition words with this student during our writing conference. Does this make sense?
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What is the exact title of this book?
Old 07-22-2010, 05:08 PM
 
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Thank you. There are so many and I'm interested in this book. Could you explain more about the leads and ending lessons?


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Old 07-23-2010, 09:45 AM
 
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The lesson is on page 119 in the 6+1 Traits book. It has the students working in groups to create a collection of interesting leads to place at the writing center. It gives examples of leads to model whole class on the overhead. The students then write the bold beginnings on the front of an index card and then write or draw examples on the back of the card. One example she gives is,
"Lights, Camera, Action: The writer makes something happen.
Example: "For the last time," my dad said. "Put your gum here.""
Each group will work on one of the techniques and example and come up with another example. They work on and share their examples, and then you hole punch the left hand corner and bind with a loose- leaf ring. This same format will work with endings, too. Hope this helps clear up the lesson idea.
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6 traits ebook
Old 07-23-2010, 11:05 PM
 
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As an ebook, I can use this with my Smartboard. I also printed out the pages and filed them in folders. I went through my reading manual for Reading Street and organized the folders with the Unit and Week so that I can look through the folders and decide what sections I will need for the lesson. Then I can immediately pull up the pages that I need without wasting time scrollling for the right page.

This book has really given me great ideas on how to teach each trait.
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Old 07-24-2010, 05:07 AM
 
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I'm interested in how you do writing using Reading Street. We just started using RS last year and as a school, we felt the writing component was very weak compared to using Lucy Calkins UOS that we were used to.

My question is, do you focus on 1 trait each week as the manual states and conduct mini-lessons about that trait while working on the writing genre for the Unit? TIA
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Reading Street
Old 07-25-2010, 10:17 AM
 
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Hi Bostonmom,

Last year was my first year to use the 6 traits,
(Luckily I learned about it here on PT. ) so I still have a lot to learn. But last year, I did follow the reading manual objectives in the morning. But we would have time in the afternoon, so I would often choose something to focus on that the students seem to need at the moment.

I totally agree with you that the writing component is weak especially for a teacher who is not sure of what students really should be doing. There really is little direction given to the teacher on how to teach students to be independent writers.

I have never been confident teaching writing, but along with the 6 traits and "No More, I'm Done", I feel like I have more direction. I really think that I will probably follow the mini lessons from the No More, I'm Done rather than the basal this year. The author incorporates the 6 traits into the lessons.

The first month had lessons that help students become familar with writier's workshop and the trait of ideas. October- organizing my writing
November- how to write with voice December - choosing the very best word
January - How to make writing flow February - how to include quality details
March - how to organize a story and how do I end a piece April - poetry
May - how to choose the strongest most effective words.

Throughout this book, she gives many story titles and mini lesson examples to help someone like me get started. I am sure after I am more comfortable, I will create my own lessons too.

I don't know if I answered your question, but what I did last year will definitely be different than what I did last year. But my folders that I organized last year will still be able to be used this year too.
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SF Reading Street
Old 07-25-2010, 11:45 AM
 
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I use SF Reading Street, too. Like you, I feel the writing component is weak. Twinsister, I think I will check out the "No More, I'm Done" book that you will be using this year. By the way, what grade do you teach? I teach 2nd.


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Old 07-25-2010, 02:26 PM
 
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Thanks for your reply. I too, teach 2nd grade and just bought the 6 +1 Traits book and have ordered No More, I'm Done online.

I'm thinking that I will run my writing block in the Writer's workshop format I have been accustomed to with Lucy Calkins. I will focus on the genre that RS advises for each unit and then give mini-lessons based on the 6 traits lessons from the above books (of course I will monitor and arrange the lessons to the needs of the students)

Ex. Unit 1- Genre- Personal Narrative
week 1- voice
week 2- word choice
week 3- word choice
week 4- conventions
week 5- sentences
review/testing week- presentation

Unit 2- Genre- How-To's
week 1- organization and so on . . .

We'll see how it goes. I'd love to hear from others about how they are teaching writing using the Reading Street program!
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respond to Jennylearn
Old 07-25-2010, 03:18 PM
 
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I teach 2nd too.
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Ok...
Old 07-25-2010, 04:40 PM
 
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Just ordered "No More..." I can't wait to read it. By the way, do you guys do Daily 5 and Cafe, too?
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Old 07-25-2010, 04:42 PM
 
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What mini lesson would you start with in a third grade class? Everything seems to be for 1st and 2nd.
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Which book
Old 07-26-2010, 07:22 PM
 
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I am confused also. Which 6 + 1 Traits book are you talking about? I would like to participate in the book talk, but want to make sure I have the right book. I have several traits book.

Thanks.
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6 + 1 Traits of Writing by Ruth Culham
Old 07-26-2010, 11:36 PM
 
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I too would like to participate in the book talk however I read the primary version. I found it highly useful in organizing the writing process as well as how it evolves and spirals between traits. This will be my third year using six traits and I love it!
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launching Writers workshop
Old 07-29-2010, 02:05 PM
 
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I have not finished the whole book, but now I'm interested in getting the book No more, I'm Done. I focused on the first few chapters that explained how the traits fit into the "writing process". I teach 2nd grade and will have the students use a binder for both reading and writing workshop. I saw someone's menu using the traits called VOICE and I modified it. I plan to give the students 2 menus. I will have a CAFE menu for reading and a VOICE menu for writing. I have skimmed through the book and have looked at the suggested activities and songs/poems. I have been thinking about teaching the traits using mini lessons along with the modes of writing (personal narrative, how to etc) and establishing a pacing guide. This is a copy of my menu and how I plan to launch writers workshop. Comments would be appreciated.
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File Type: xls launchingwritersworkshop.xls (20.0 KB, 664 views)
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VOICE Menu
Old 07-29-2010, 02:06 PM
 
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I could only attach one document OOPs
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File Type: xls sixtraitsmenu.xls (17.0 KB, 587 views)
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JMeacham website 6+1 Traits
Old 07-29-2010, 03:56 PM
 
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I am so excited about this board! I grew up with the 6+1 traits writing model in elementary school, and have used it in my 5 years of teaching.

Last year, a colleague and I actually taught a course on the 6+1 Traits, and we used Culham's primary and intermediate books as our "text". I've found JMeacham's website very helpful when planning writing lessons! (her site is also worth your time to look around if you haven't!) She's taught kinder and 1st, but I can modify most of her ideas for my 2nd and 3rd graders.

http://www.jmeacham.com/writing.mini.lessons.htm -Click on the check mark under Writing Traits for AWESOME units that can be modified to your needs

http://www.jmeacham.com/planning.guides.htm -Scope & Sequence/Pacing guides

In my classroom, I use a variety of activities from JMeacham, as well as lessons and activities from Culham's book. Next year, I will FOCUS on 1 trait a month, review previous traits taught.

Enjoy!
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mentor texts
Old 08-16-2010, 06:45 AM
 
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What mentor books will you use for your voice menu?
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Thank you Twobee
Old 08-17-2010, 04:55 AM
 
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This is perfect! It will go right along with my CAFE menu. Thank you so much for sharing.
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Old 08-19-2010, 01:51 PM
 
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I will be using the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing (for Primary Grades) by Ruth Culham at first. I would like to get, No more I'm Done by Jennifer Jacobson. I have heard that her book is a good supplement to the 6 +1 Traits book.
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