Monday, October 6, 2014

Building vocabulary through writing

This year I have a sweet little friend who is brand new to America... And English! Thankfully he is a sweet, outgoing fellow who has made friends very easily, but we definitely run into some communication issues! I love watching him on the playground talk to his friends in Spanish and they respond to him in English or when he rattles off a sentence to me and I respond with an "ok!" And he rushes back to his work, and I am left having no idea what just happened! My other favorite is when I try to pull out a Spanish word from my limited vocabulary and another Hispanic child comes up to me and tells me that I did a great job saying "---" in Spanish! Isn't he such a great little bucket filler!

Writing is my area to work on this year... it easily gets pushed to the side when things get busy, but I want to be more intentional about guiding my kids through the writing process. I decided that giving my kids some tools to help scaffold them as writers was one step in the right direction! When it comes to vocabulary, we read a lot to build vocabulary, but if they work at making better word choices in their writing they will internalize the vocabulary more then just hearing it.

I have several kids who I have noticed needed a little more support when it comes to writing and vocabulary so this weekend I started working on a little writing resource for my kids. I started with the tier one vocabulary that was recommended to us by our district and then added some writing tools that I like to or want to start using during our writing workshop. I hope this helps to bridge the gap between reading and writing.

These are some of the things I am excited to use with the kids...

I have tried a couple of different editing ideas for kids, 
but I always go back to this one as my favorite!

As we build up our sight words and other vocabulary we can add them to our personal word walls!

We won't add this to our writing folders until we build up our vocabulary a bit, 
but when we come across better word choices in books etc, we can add them to our Thesaurus! 

I am really excited about this tool to help my sweet little English learner and other kids who need it! 
I printed one copy and laminated it and Alex did not want to let go of it! Haha!
Hopefully first graders will enjoy it as much as he does!

All of the parts of the writing helper are also included as full page posters.
Check out the whole product here or click on the picture!

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