Slice of Life: When Writing is Play

The end of the year is approaching, and the to-do checklist seems endless.

Today, amid the to-dos, students slogged through one more reading assessment. The last one of this year.

Thirty minutes into it, I asked them to pause and come to the meeting area. About half had finished.  They sat there full of that energy that says let me play.  When I told them the rest of the period was for their independent writing projects, you’d thought I’d told them to go to recess early.  And it’s no surprise when you consider these titles:
Pickle Man and Green Screen Man #2
Zenomorph Special: Surfing the Net
Accepted for Who I Am
Real Friends: For my real friends
Why I think dogs are great pets to have
The Date
The Journey of My Life
Behind the Scenes at the Krabby Patty

Or these leads:
One cool day in Lima Peru I stepped outside of my home…
So, I honestly don’t know what is happening, I think I am stuck in a game called …
Here these were the doors that would lead me to high school.

Crazy good fun. In every genre imaginable.
Pages and pages of writing.
As far as they are concerned, the only constraint is time.
As far as they are concerned, this is play.

They have learned, without any assistance from me, how to share their Google docs with their writing partners. They comment and revise as a part of the process.

They have learned, with some input from their fourth-grade year of writer’s workshop,
a little bit more about being writers.

Tomorrow they will write more with their sights on a Friday celebration. That will be the end. Or (as my students love to say) will it?

I’m hoping their writing lives will continue in this way. Using their Google docs and their cyber writing partners.  Outside the requirements and expectations. Just to play.

Thank you, Two Writing Teachers for Slice of Life Tuesday.  Read more slices here.


4 thoughts on “Slice of Life: When Writing is Play

  1. We have independent writing projects going on in first grade right now and the kids are loving writing time. It’s exactly what you described play. So much joy. We are trying to figure out ways to keep it going all year. Over the summer we are reading Colleen Cruz’s book, Independent Writers.

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