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#1: Make it a Group Project
If you want to get your students more engaged in the writing process, have them break into groups to collaborate on the writing project The group members can analyze each other’s work, learn from one another, or even grade each other’s papers. This can unleash your students’ creativity a bit more than if they were working individually.
#2: Don’t Read Their Papers
By not reading your students’ work, you’re opening yourself to the possibility that your students will not do the project. However, you’ll also have students who take the assignment more seriously than they otherwise would have. While it’s not a good idea to take grading off the table entirely, this might be a good option to introduce periodically.
#3: Introduce Variety into your Classroom
Students might get bored reading classic novels and poetry all the time. To mix it up, introduce other mediums into your classroom. You can have your students read contemporary novels, screenplays, modern poetry, stage plays, short stories, etc. Find out what your students want to read, and then focus your writing projects on those pieces.
#4: Allow Publication
Some students might be motivated if you have a classroom or school publication. You could create a quarterly or monthly compilation of your students’ work and send it to the parents and teachers, or you could post the work in the halls or an online forum.
#5: Advise Students to Use Online Tools
There are so many great online resources for students. If they’re not using any of them, your students are missing out. Some great websites where they can find useful information are:
#6: Make Your Classroom PG-13
Older students are used to living in a PG-13 world. They aren’t going to faint if they read a swear word or see a mildly romantic scene in a novel. By introducing more PG-13 material into the classroom (as long as you have older students), you will be able to spark more interest. They might actually want to write about the material.
#7: Host A Slam Poetry Night
Slam poetry is fun, interactive, and gives a voice to students who have an important message they want to share. If you have students who are interested in poetry, you might consider hosting a slam poetry night.
#8: Encourage Outside Reading
One of the best ways to get students excited about writing is to get them excited about reading. The two naturally go together. So, encourage your students to spend their free time reading. Let them know that they can read whatever they want in their free time.
#9: Let Little Mistakes Go
If you correct every little tiny detail, students will get discouraged and stop wanting to write. It’s fine to let the typos go if you’re trying to teach structure. On the other hand, if you’re teaching grammar, then let the structure go.
#10: Allow Illustrations
Some students might be more motivated to write (especially creative writing), if they can also create illustrations. Also, illustrations might spark their creativity in other ways.
Getting your students excited about writing might seem like a nearly impossible feat, but it really can be done! Plenty of students want to learn to be better writers. They want to create and express themselves. They just need a good place to start. These ideas will help you provide that starting point.
The Snarky Schoolteacher is an education and lifestyle blog run by dedicated educational professionals. Our goal is to bring you relevant and fun educational content with a side of sass. Read more about our team here. Thanks for visiting, and we hope you will find these ideas and resources helpful in your classrooms and in your lives.