I hope that you are already familiar with my first two Mr. Terupt novels, which feature seven different classroom voices in fifth and sixth grades, each with a unique story, and each with a different perspective on what makes their teacher, Mr. Terupt, so special. I love hearing about the many ways in which Mr. Terupt’s projects are being implemented in classrooms, libraries, and afterschool programs. Whether it’s dollar words, counting blades of grass, or sharing the same books and reading activities, Mr. Terupt has sparked new ideas and excitement. As a former teacher, I thought it’d be great if Mr. Terupt could share additional teaching tips. So I’m thrilled to introduce the first installment of Mr. Terupt’s Teaching Tips.
Mr. Terupt’s Teaching Tip #1: Getting Your Students to Revise
As teachers, we often grade and discuss only a final piece of writing. Sometimes that is what counts. However, part of becoming a strong writer is working on the process. If you want your students to value the process and to work at it—revision, especially—then why not create a rubric and grade them on it? Each unit of study would then conclude with a grade for the final product and a separate grade for the entire process. There are many parts of the writing process that you could include on that rubric, but a top revising score might mean the student was able to take your comments (and/or mini-lessons) and rework an area of the piece. Maybe several areas! Maybe several times! With the process rubric, you might find that your average writer will do more work because his process grade can be an A. Not only that, this student might start to feel better about writing and in turn show improvement. In addition, a gifted but unmotivated writer might decide to do more, and who knows? One day he or she might just turn out to be a writer—or a teacher or librarian!
I hope that you enjoyed Mr. Terupt’s first teaching tip. I’d love to hear from you if you found it helpful or if you have additional thoughts or ideas about revision. If you create a process rubric, I’d be happy to share it on my website. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. The first ten people to contact me will receive a free copy of my new book, Saving Mr. Terupt!
You can visit Rob to read more about his revision process and strategies at robbuyea.com. You will also find new Mr. Terupt’s Teaching Tips on the first Monday of every month, starting in August.
Educators’ Guide is now available.
| HC: 978-0-385-74205-4
| HC: 978-0-385-74355-6