My 2nd grade group is a group of all boys, which means I am really trying to keep them engaged with “boy stuff”!!  We’ve been doing a lot of scenario writing as an extension of a book we read the previous day.  Yesterday we read Meli Goes To School, which is about a dog who needs to go to dog school to learn to be a good pet.  Our extension writing was a pretend story I told the boys about how our school mascot went wild and was no longer being a good mascot.  They would have to write about how they would teach the cougar to be a good school mascot.  Let me tell you–this went over REALLY well.  They loved the thought at the cougar being naughty.

One of the emphasis in group is the practice page.  Students are expected to come up with a general idea of their writing before beginning.  They have about 20 minutes to write and have about 5 minutes to conference with me on their writing.  This process takes place about every other day, with a new book and word work taking place the opposite day.  Our group meets for 30 minutes each day.  Students are expected to use the practice page for unknown words.  I put a check mark above each correct sound they practiced and then I either help them with the correct spelling or refer them to their personal dictionaries.  Students want to be right, but I try to stress the importance of the process.  “Look at all the sounds you got right!  Great job!”  This extra praise has shown them the value of the practice page and as you can see, they are using it more and more.

Our group has only been meeting a few sessions so we are still working on when to use punctuation, where capitals go, and leaving spaces between words.  Each day is definitely an adventure with a group of all boys, but the writing is always so much fun.