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Strategic Writing Mini-Lessons for All Students, Grades 4–8

By: Janet C. Richards, Cynthia A. Lassonde

Foreword by Jane Hansen

This full toolbox of creative mini-lessons helps your students build fundamental writing skills, and includes adaptations that reach all your learners through differentiated instruction.

Full description

Product Details
  • Grade Level: PreK-12
  • ISBN: 9781452235011
  • Published By: Corwin
  • Year: 2012
  • Page Count: 264
  • Publication date: January 07, 2013

Price: $42.95

Price: $42.95
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Power up writing instruction with short, differentiated lessons!

The hard reality? By the time they reach middle school, many of our students still lack basic writing skills, and this may be one of their last opportunities to get up to speed before they reach high school. There's no better resource for you to help them do so than Strategic Writing Mini-Lessons for All Students, Grades 4–8.

Covering all four essential writing strategies—inventing, drafting, writing, and editing—these differentiated mini-lessons follow an easy-to-navigate, consistent structure, including:

  • A schematic linking lessons to the grade-level goals of the Common Core 
  • Adaptations for struggling writers, English Language Learners, and even advanced writers with every lesson
  • Support for different types of learners through use of color-coding techniques, charts, art, and other visual tools
  • Specific guidance on developing your students' confidence as writers and their ability to work independently

Within no time, your students will write with a newfound competence and confidence, better equipped to meet the demands ahead of them.

"This book is the most useful writing resource I have encountered in all my years of teaching. It is filled with practical strategies to produce writers with high-quality work product and high interest in the craft of writing."
—Linda Sarver, Teacher
Excelsior Springs, MO

Key features

  • Presents a model for teaching writing that is derived from various theoretical frameworks and based on the authors' extensive experiences teaching writing to primary students and students in the upper elementary grades.
  • Includes mini-lessons that allow teachers to meet students' writing instructional needs through 15- to 30-minute differentiated, direct-instruction lessons that they can connect to any district, school, or classroom writing program.
  • Features grade-specific instructional strategies that are clearly scaffolded for learners at various levels
  • Includes chapters written by practicing teachers that include authentic scenarios and effective classroom strategies
  • In addition to being classroom-tested, each strategy is linked to sound research
  • Includes strategies that can be easily adapted for cross-circular lessons


Janet C. Richards photo

Janet C. Richards

Janet C. Richards is a Professor of Literacy and Research at the University of South Florida, Tampa, where she teaches graduate courses in qualitative and transdisciplinary research, academic writing, literacy, and multicultural literature. She publishes extensively and was selected as a Lansdowne Visiting Scholar, University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. She also served as an International Reading Association Volunteer Literacy Scholar in emerging Eastern European and Central Asian nations, and is the Senior Editor of the Journal of Reading Education.
Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Foreword by Jane Hansen

Introduction: Meeting Your Students’ Needs With Specific Writing Strategies by Janet C. Richards, Cynthia A. Lassonde

Section I. Strategic Inventing: Contemplating Ideas

1. Color-Coding Sources by Cynthia A. Lassonde

2. Developing Students’ Awareness of Their Strengths as Writers with an I-Can! Chart by Joanne Durham

3. Using a Blueprint Graphic Organizer to Build a Story by Jennifer A. Fontenot

4. Using Genre Charts to Guide Planning and Writing by Gabe Horn, Susan D. Martin

5. Reciprocal Text Structure Mapping for Expository Writing by Joyce C. Fine

6. Thanks for the Memories! Using a Sensory-Details Chart to Prepare to Write by Sandra Gandy, Mariah Kraus

7. Organizing an Expository Essay: Using Big Idea Checklists to Support Writers by Allison Stone, Joyce C. Fine

Section II. Strategic Drafting: Putting Ideas on Paper

8. Quilting Together an Expository Paper in Four Steps by Cynthia A. Lassonde

9. Team Writing to Foster Students’ Motivation to Write: Moving From Group Work to Independence by Janet C. Richards

10. Use Your Words: Learning to Paraphrase by Janet C. Richards

11. Creating Rounded Characters through Cartoon Connections by Krishna Seunarinesingh

12. Applying the Structure Strategy to Write Persuasive Texts by Bonnie J. F. Meyer, Jennifer Ireland, Melissa Ray

13. Buddies Build It Stronger: A Sentence-Combining Strategy by Todd Sundeen

Section III. Strategic Revising: Attending to Organization and Cohesiveness

14. Deconstruct Then Reconstruct a First Draft by Cynthia A. Lassonde

15. Portal Writing: A Strategy to Help Writers Rethink Their Writing by S. Rebecca Leigh

16. Conferring with an Avatar by Chase Young, Lynda Swanner

17. Writing Aloud: A Sound-Savvy Approach to Writing by Sandra K. Athans

18. A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words: Revising With Photographs by Noreen S. Moore

Section IV. Strategic Editing: The Finishing Touch

19. Revising and Editing Through Primary Sources by Nancy Williams, Kathleen Muir

20. Code Switching, an Editing Strategy by Rebecca Wheeler

21. The Imagine, Describe, Resolve, and Confrim (IDRC) Strategy by Lindsay Sheronick Yearta, Katie Stover, Lynne Newton, Karen Wood

22. Probable Passages: Using Story Structure to Write and Revise a Predictive Passage by Katie Stover, Jean Vintinner, Crystal Glover, Karen Wood



About the Authors

About the Contributors



Price: $42.95
Volume Discounts applied in Shopping Cart

For Instructors

Request Review Copy

When you select 'request review copy', you will be redirected to Sage Publishing (our parent site) to process your request.