Language Arts / Writing

Writer's Workshop: Step-Up to Writing and Write Source

Writer's Workshop: Step-Up to Writing and Write Source


Students in grades K5-8 enjoy daily writing activities through the Writer's Workshop design which emphasizes writing as a process.  From the invented spellings of a first-grader to the 2-page essay of an eighth-garder, a piece of writing is never perfect the first time; therefore, it must be revised and edited.


There are five steps in the writing process:


  1. Prewriting: students use FAT-P, an acronym used to set a purpose for writing.  They identify the F-form, A-audience, T-topic, and P-purpose.  Afterwards, they brainstorm ideas and use graphic organizers to guide their thinking.
  2. Sloppy Copy (Rough Draft): students transfer their ideas from their graphic organizers into paragraph form.
  3. Revising: students read their rough drafts and correct them to make sure it is well organized.  Students use TAG, an acronym used to guide them in this process, with a partner.  First students T-Tell what they liked about their partner's essay.  Then they A-ask questions about sections of the paragraph that may have been unclear or may need further explanation.  Lastly, students G-give suggestions for improvements.
  4. Editing:  students use the acronym CUPS to correct errors in C-capitalization, U-usage, P-Punctuation, and S-spelling
  5. Final Copy - students publish and share their final copies.


Daily lessons generally last from 40 to 45 minutes.  Teachers begin by introducing a mini-lesson focusing on grammar, spelling, or a specific aspect of the writing process.  The mini-lesson is followed by 20 to 25 minutes of writing time during which students engage in one of the steps of the writing process.  Teachers conclude the writing lesson partner or whole-group sharing.