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Casework in K–6 Writing Instruction

Connecting Composing Strategies, Digital Literacies, and Disciplinary Content to the Common Core


Edited By Jenifer Jasinski Schneider

Casework in K–6 Writing Instruction is a collection of teaching cases that feature real teachers, real students, and real examples of K–6 writing instruction. Using student/teacher dialogue and reader-friendly narration, each case author describes a teacher’s use of print and/or media-based tools to teach students how to write for literacy and disciplinary purposes. Rather than focusing on one particular method, this book features multiple methods, such as writing workshop, 6+1 Traits, and balanced literacy, presented through authentic classroom examples. The book includes a view of writing instruction across grade levels, disciplines, and contexts. Current and future classroom teachers will be interested in the practical application and various viewpoints presented throughout the book. Casework in K–6 Writing Instruction could be used in teacher study groups, professional learning communities, undergraduate courses, Masters courses, and professional development seminars at the local, national, and international levels.
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12. The Writing Runaround: Using Explicit Instruction to Teach Ideas and Organization through Modeled Writing (Fourth Grade)




Every writing lesson began with the lively voices of Mrs. Miller’s fourth graders singing “Write, Right!” to the tune of “Runaround Sue” (DiMucci & Maresca, 1961). The students seemed to enjoy the opportunity to stand up, perform the dance routine, and sing along to the cheery melody. Yet, the memorized steps and words positioned the students to produce writing that was artificially constrained by high-stakes testing. Does routinized writing instruction empower students with the academic advantage of learning to write for success, or does it limit their literacy access to learning the five-paragraph essay, a genre that is only used in school?


• Fourth grade classroom

• Public school: Inner-city, at-risk population

• Class: 10 girls, 5 boys; 11 black, 1 white, 3 Latina/Latino

• Teacher [Mrs. Miller]: White female with 7 years’ experience ← 155 | 156 →

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