Joy Write: Cultivating High-Impact, Low-Stakes Writing

Joy Write: Cultivating High-Impact, Low-Stakes Writing

by Ralph Fletcher

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Ralph Fletcher is bringing joy back to writing

Nothing helps writers grow like practice. But not just any kind of practice will do. You've got to bring the joy! In Joy Write, beloved writer and teacher Ralph Fletcher shows you how.

How do writers really grow?

"A writer needs wide latitude so she can bring all her intelligence to the task," Ralph observes. "Assigning a particular format-a hamburger essay, for instance-would curtail this play, if not eliminate it entirely." That's why, instead of teacher-driven assignments, Joy Write shares the whys and the how of giving students time and autonomy for the playful, low-stakes writing that leads to surprising, high-level growth.

Five ideas for authentic, choice-driven writing

First Ralph makes the case for carving out classroom time for low-stakes writing, despite pressure to focus on persuasive essays and test prep. Then he shares five big ideas for choice-driven, authentic, informal writing-deeply engaging work that kids want to do. He also provides numerous suggestions for helping students build and flex their writing muscles, increase their stamina, and develop passion for expressing themselves with the written word.

"We don't teach students to write," Ralph Fletcher advises, "so much as create a safe space where they can teach themselves by doing." Trust Ralph and find out how to bring the joy to your writers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780325088808
Publisher: Heinemann
Publication date: 04/06/2017
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 120
Sales rank: 629,494
Product dimensions: 7.40(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.28(d)

About the Author

Ralph Fletcher has been a mentor to teachers and young writers everywhere. He has helped hundreds of thousands of teachers understand the importance of letting go and trusting their writers. Ralph's professional books are part of this tradition. His newest book, Focus Lessons, helps teachers use the natural links between writing and photography to enhance their instruction. Another recent title, Joy Write, explores the value of giving students time and autonomy for the playful, low-stakes writing that leads to surprising, high-level growth. Ralph frequently works with young writers in schools, and speaks at education conferences in the U.S. and abroad, helping teachers find wiser ways of teaching writing. Ralph is the beloved author of many bestselling teacher professional books and resources including: - Writing Workshop: The Essential Guide - What a Writer Needs, Second Edition - Mentor Author, Mentor Texts - Craft Lessons - Breathing In, Breathing Out - Teaching the Qualities of Writing - Lessons for the Writer's Notebook Students know Ralph as the award-winning author of more than 20 books for children and young adults, including Fig Pudding, Twilight Comes Twice, The Writer's Notebook, Marshfield Dreams: When I Was a Kid, and most recently Marshfield Memories: More Stories About Growing Up. Ralph Fletcher online Listen to a recent Heinemann podcast where Ralph talks about Joy Write (17:31). Read Ralph's latest thoughts at his blog: Living the Writing Life. Listen to an interview with Ralph on Education Talk Radio (38:29). Learn more about Ralph at his website and follow him on Twitter @FletcherRalph.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Introduction: A Personal Note xi

The Big Chill

1 My Beautiful Balloon 3

2 Trouble in Writing Paradise 9

3 Faulty Assumptions 17

4 The Play Imperative 25

A Writing Greenbelt

5 Greenbelt Writing 37

6 The Slice of Life Challenge 43

7 A Classroom Notebook 51

8 Feral Writing 61

9 I'm-Trying-to-Figure-This-Out Writing 73

10 The Reluctant Writer 79

11 The Big Picture 89

12 Ralph on Ralph: A Self-Interview 91

Appendix 101

References 103

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