For several weeks we worked on producing lots and lots of stories. Some writers worked on the same page day after day, and some writers added many pages to one story. Still other writers wrote several stories each day. At this point, I don't put a lot of restrictions on them because I just want writing to be a positive experience for them to express themselves. At the end of each workshop, we sit with our writing partners and share what we worked on that day:
I encourage them to touch the paper (the pictures or the words) and tell the story as they point. This sounds intuitive but in fact it's a learned skill! (Some kids tend to just face the paper in their own direction while they tell the story. :) )
When we were finally ready to publish, we picked our favorite story and gave it a title. Then we made covers for the story. When we were completely done, we had a very fun ceremony in which I played the Olympic theme song and announced the title of each published book. Then the author came up and we gave him/her a round of applause. Then they read their stories to their third grade reading buddies. I took pictures but they are on my other camera so I'll have to add them when I get back to school. Here are a few published pieces!
Our upcoming Writers Workshop unit will focus on adding labels and words to our stories, and making sure that your story sticks to the same topic. Sometimes this can be a challenge, especially when we write for multiple days in a row and the kids have to remember what they wrote about the day before. Oftentimes the story will start off describing a trip to Grandma's house and then end up about an evil head that eats pumpkins. My favorite book title from one of our writers this year was "The Hole that Sucked in Dana." Dana gave her permission to be featured. :)