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The Classroom Essentials
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Table of Contents

  • Part One: What Is a Writing Conference?
  • My First Writing Conference Was a Disaster
  • Writing Conferences Happen in Writing Workshop
  • What Is a Writing Conference?
  • Why Confer?
  • Part Two: Start by Discovering What the Student is Doing as a Writer
  • Invite Students to Talk About Their Writing
  • What Will Students Talk About?
  • Five Scenarios That Happen After You Ask, "How's It Going?"
  • Try It Yourself: Studying Your Conferring
  • Part Three: Assess and Decide What to Teach
  • Recognizing Patterns Is the Key to Good Decision-Making
  • Writing Patterns and Teaching Points
  • Try It Yourself: Building Your Knowledge of Writing Patterns and Teaching Points
  • Part Four: Then Teach Powerfully
  • Move One: Give Feedback
  • Move Two: Deliver a Teaching Point
  • Move Three: Coach
  • Move Four: Link to Independent Work
  • Studying the Four Teaching Moves in a Transcript of a Conference
  • Try It Yourself: Improving Your Conference Teaching

About the Author

Carl Anderson is an internationally recognized expert in writing instruction for Grades K-8, working as a consultant in schools and districts around the world. A long-time Staff Developer for the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project, Carl is the author of numerous books on teaching writing, including the bestselling How's It Going? A Practical Guide to Conferring with Student Writers. His latest book, A Teacher's Guide to Writing Conferences, is part of the Classroom Essentials series. Full of classroom video, the book helps teachers understand the underlying principles and reasons for conferring with students, and how to make writing conferences a part of teachers' daily routines.

For many years as the author of bestselling Heinemann books such as About the Authors, Study Driven, Already Ready, and In Pictures and In Words, and as a member of Heinemann's Professional Development Services, Katie Wood Ray gave teachers resources and PD that transformed writing instruction and helped children discover a lifelong love of writing. In 2014, Katie "moved to the other side of the desk" and joined the dynamic team of editors at Heinemann where she works closely with authors to craft powerful professional books on a range of literacy topics. Katie is also the series editor for the new Classroom Essentials books from Heinemann. Tasked with bringing foundational, progressive practices to a new generation of teachers, Katie works to ensure that the sharp focus and enhanced design of each book best serve the content. She also teamed up with her longtime collaborator, Lisa Cleaveland, to write one of the first books in the series, A Teacher's Guide to Getting Started with Beginning Writers. You can find her on Twitter at @KatieWoodRay.

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