It is so hard to believe that our school year is already well into the second half! My students are making progress each in their own way, but the best growth I am seeing is in their interactions with each and myself. We are able to hold small group and whole class discussions with nearly all students participating without any prompting. Students feel comfortable orally sharing their thoughts, and ideas with the group. We are working to put those thoughts and ideas into our own words and onto paper.
For some of my students who struggle with writing due to their written language (and therefore reading) level this is a difficult task. I realised that they had the ability to tell a story, or retell about an incident, but they lacked the ability to put it on paper. These students are now able to confidently use "voice typing" on Google Docs and embed that writing into their assignments. They may not always have the correct spelling or grammar at this point, mostly due to the interpretation of the voice type software of their speech, but they are now able to produce their own work and ideas to complete their assignments and share on their blogs.
We continue to read our novel on a daily basis, and my students were so excited to discover that the novel we finished last term had a part 2! Using the written text of the novel to reiterate the concepts we are talking about in our writing assignments throughout the year allows us to review continually and expand our understanding of the topics we have previously discussed.
This term, I am beginning to focus on working with my students to write there answers and convey the ideas in their writing assignments using their own words. We will also continue to build our toolbox for writing narratives by looking at developing complex sentences and incorporating correct usage of dialogue.