Today Ruth discusses the importance of choice in the Writer's Workshop and I love how she describes her journey to this element of the Workshop in her room. I think all teachers struggle with choice. Such as how much choice? When I was talking with other colleagues about the aspect of choice in the WW I was keenly aware that each of us were on the same, but different journey.
I tend to allow choice within genre. For example, students choose what they want to write within the unit of study of personal narrative, essay writing, memoir, etc. However, some teachers allow not only choice of topic, but choice of genre. So, the mini-lesson of the day may or may not apply to the student, but all are expected to then apply it when they try that genre of writing.
I have not nor have I thought of this before. This absolutely amazed me because I still have not let go of somethings. Now granted 5th graders are expected to have mastered the art of essay writing by Feb. due to state mandated testing and that is probably what drives my avoidance of letting go, but I do wonder like Ruth..could I do it? Could I handle all the different genres that may be written at one time in a room of 30? What about the students who need the black and white of the writing process? Food for thought....thanks, Ruth!