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Craft Lessons Second Edition: Teaching Writing K-8 (Paperback)
Since its publication in 1998 Craft Lessons has become a mainstay of writing teachers, both new and experienced. Readers value the pithy, practical lessons—each printed on one page—and appreciate the instructional language geared to three grade-level groupings: K–2, 3–4, and 5–8.
In the decade since Craft Lessons' publication the world has changed in many ways, yet one thing has remained constant: teachers continue to feel starved for time. With new curriculum mandates, daily specials, “pull-outs,” and precious time devoted to test preparation, the situation has never been worse, and the need for a succinct resource like Craft Lessons has never been greater.
The features that made Craft Lessons so valuable have been augmented. This edition includes: Seventeen brand new craft lessons; many based on veteran teachers' observations about typical student writing. Revisions to other craft lessons: model texts that have gone out of print have been replaced with current titles, and the resource materials sections have been expanded.New thinking about teaching elements of craft and the reading-writing connection.Two new indexes: a handy subject index to make it easier to find specific craft lessons, and an index that shows how these craft lessons can be integrated into Ralph and JoAnn's curriculum resource on the “qualities of writing”—Ideas, Design, Language, and Presentation.
The 95 lessons in this book provide a wealth of information for teaching leads, character, endings, stronger verbs, and much more. This new edition reestablishes Craft Lessons as the crucial “desert island book” for harried writing teachers everywhere.
About the Author
JoAnn Portalupi likes to introduce herself as a mother, teacher, writer, and artist. Each of these roles informs the work she does in the field of teaching writing.
She began her career in education as a fourth-grade teacher in Epsom, New Hampshire. "I was bit by the writing bug my second year of teaching when I was lucky enough to attend the University of New Hampshire's first Institute on Teaching Writing where I met and worked with Tom Newkirk, Lucy Calkins, Donald Murray, and Donald Graves. In that summer I discovered a pedagogy that resonated with my own belief about teaching and learning: that a strong teacher-student relationship lies at the heart of both." Since then she has worked in education as a classroom teacher, a staff developer at Teachers College Writing Project, a university professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and most recently as an independent consultant. JoAnn is also the co-author with her husband, Ralph Fletcher, of numerous professional books and videos.
Her four sons have given JoAnn plenty of opportunity to refine her thinking about teaching writing. "Raising school age boys gave me a panoramic view of teaching. Engaging as a parent at home continually challenges me to think about the responsibility of teaching another parent's child. Discovering up close the four distinct personalities in my own children is a constant reminder of the diversity of each and every learner."
After years of traveling to work with teachers, JoAnn prefers putting her time into two new endeavors that continue to inform her thinking about education. She currently serves on the Oyster River Cooperative School Board. "My experience as a board member allows me to work with a fine group of administrators, teachers, and staff in the exciting and complex task of building and maintaining an excellent school district."
Her newest classroom is her own artist's studio. "After years of wanting to learn to paint, I finally took myself seriously. I built a studio, found a teacher, and have been painting for the last seven years. Standing in front of a blank canvas reminds me of all the excitement and frustration of being a novice and has ushered in new insights about what it means to be a learner. Maybe these ideas will make their way into a book someday, but for now I'm just trying to keep my brushes wet."