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Writing Center Activities

Hey there!

I have been working on this center for over a year.  We used it last year, and I have to say - it worked out better than I could have imagined.  My kiddos fought loved going to the writing center to work in these binders, and they also loved reading what other kids wrote.   For years we did a Newsflash where my parents cut out newspaper pictures and students could pick the picture and write their own story.  They absolutely loved doing this, and our writing improved dramatically.  Åt the end of the day, students who had finished their Newsflash "article" were able to read it to their classmates.   Can I say, "PRICELESS!"  So, I started thinking that I really could do this with a variety of topics - and so I began to create these.  At first we did them as little books, but that was ONE.HOT.MESS!
One of my co-workers used binders to show student writing during parent/teacher conferences, and that gave me the idea to do the binders.  Thanks C. Cassidy!!  We do two different parent/teacher conferences, so by the second one, the parents truly see the growth in their child's writing.  We place all the binders outside for parents to look at while they are waiting for me.

Here are what some of the covers look like, as well as the word wall sheets that go in the front of the binder, and the writing pages.

This is a great way to practice writing for students.  There are a ton of writing covers with topics.

We start off with one binder, and we do a word wall as an entire group.  (We have two sheets in the binder that are designed like a mini word wall.)   We discuss what words we might need as we are writing on that topic.  Once done, we put the word wall sheets in the binder, along with a bunch of writing sheets.  And the fun begins!

Now, don't get me wrong!  I don't just put the binders in the writing center and watch them create masterpieces!  I wish!!!  We do writing activities whole group daily.
Here's what I did:  I would pick a binder topic and write about it every day.  Sometimes I would take several days to write about one topic, to show them that it wasn't a race to finish.  Good writers take many hours writing to create their "masterpiece".  I also used student writings that were great and attainable and posted them on our bulletin board as examples of what I was looking for.  But I think the real kicker was allowing them to read to the class in the afternoon.  If their story didn't make sense, or was too silly, they actually knew it as they were reading - it only took a few times for them to realize that they really needed to take their time when writing so that their story made sense and the audience actually enjoyed their story.   MANY.MANY.MANY times they started reading to the class, then asked if they could fix it and read again the next day.  So, we also decided that before you could read it to the class, you needed to read it to at least two different friends during center time.  This helped us tremendously as well.

Here are some samples of student work!


This center was so popular, that I decided to create some "Quick Writes" as well.  For these, students just grab a card and write about what the card says in their writing journal.  I didn't expect it to be such a hit - but the kids loved this center as well.

I hope this helps someone out there with their writing centers.   HUGS!

Here's my writing center that I just added to my TPT store! :)


  1. Thanks for linking up with us this month! Great ideas for writers workshop! :)


Thank you for leaving a message - let me know if you have a classroom that I can check out as well:-)