Most authors go through what is called a “writing process”. For the 3rd and 4th Grade group at the Young Writer’s Camp, this statement is true. Their head instructor, Dearing, made them a chart to help them understand the writing process, this chart can be seen below. The 3rd and 4th graders have utilized this method in order to create a piece of writing which, when they share it with the camp at the end of their two weeks here, they can be proud of.
At the beginning of the class everyday, Dearing would have a writing prompt for the kids. This is what Dearing coined a “quick write”. These quick writes challenge the kids to add important elements such as, imagery, dialogue, and work on revision.
Here is a picture of the kids’ writing journals where they participate in the quick write.
Here is a picture of Alex’s quick write. In pencil, he tells his part of the story from the beginning of the day. In pen, he finishes the rest of his story, adding details and dialogue. Once they finish their daily quick write, the other four writing coaches come and help the kids with their stories. The kids begin the process with writing about their own selected topics and the coach’s job to help give constructive feedback to them. It is always up to the author, in this case the kids, whether or not to include the advice from the coaches and other instructors. Once they finish writing, the coaches and instructors will help the kids to revise and edit their work.
One important thing a writer must do is to take a break and step away from their work. We like to give them a snack break, which is a time for them to let out their energy and restlessness
Here is a picture of the kids standing line waiting for their snack.
Here is a picture of their snack, a Popsicle and some assorted snacks
Here are some pictures of some of the girls enjoying their snack.
Here is a picture of the four boys, Ben, Paresh, Alex, and Garland (from left to right). After the final touches are made, the kids will upload their project to their choice of either Powtoons, a comic book esque animation program, Flipsnack, a digital book publishing device, Weebly, a website creator, or Voicethread, a slideshow of images with audio overlayed. On the second Friday of the camp, the kids will have the chance to present their published, final drafts to the rest of the camper’s, as well as, the camper’s family and friends. In preparing for this presentation the kids have practiced presenting their quick write responses to the class. Working on projecting their voice and looking at the audience, the kids have come a long way in their public speaking skills. Their final drafts have another audience as well, they will be sent to a non-profit organization in Kenya called the Melon Project. This organization helps to establish schooling for children and use the stories sent from the Young Writer’s program as inspiration and reading materials for the children they serve.
Near the end of the class everyday, Dearing would finish off the class with another quick write or lesson that ties everything together. She incorporates issues some kids have had during the day or topics the visiting authors have addressed that day. During this time the kids have enjoyed developing creative, silly short stories they can share with the class. Watching the kid’s skills grow in the various areas of the writing process this camp addresses has made volunteering a rewarding experience. Here is a picture of Alex reading his revised quick write.Here is a picture of some of the kids, and Dearing, listening to a story being read.
Here is a picture of Taylor reading her quick write.
Here is a picture of Yumar and Ben raising their hands to provide Taylor with constructive feedback on her story.