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Six Stages of the Writing Process

Six Stages of the Writing Process

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Six Stages of the Writing Process

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  1. Six Stages of the Writing Process What you need to know before you write

  2. Thoughts on writing • Creating a good piece of writing doesn’t involve knowing a secret handshake with your teacher or “magical” formula • Creating a good piece of writing takes a little determination and a set of tools that you learn and with which you keep practicing. • The process of writing is not linear or fixed, but rather fluid. • Most importantly, you need the ability of revision. • Revision, or re-vision, is seeing through different eyes to make writing better.

  3. Six Stages of Writing • Prewriting • Drafting • Conferencing • Revising • Editing • Publishing

  4. Prewriting = Exploring the Topic • Prewriting is any kind of activity that helps the writer determine what he or she will write about. Some of the most common are: • Making lists • Brainstorming • Webbing, clustering, or use of graphic organizers • Outlining • Remembering • Drawing • Discussion • Free writing, notebook or journal writing • Note taking

  5. The purpose of the prewriting stage is to allow the writer to explore the topic thoroughly, in an unstructured and non-threatening way, before entering into formal composition. Prewriting is a prerequisite for good writing. Don't skip it or cut it short!

  6. Drafting = Putting it Down on Paper • Drafting is where formal writing begins. Using prewriting materials as inspiration, the writer writes. And writes. And writes some more. • The writer doesn’t worry too much about mechanics or style or organization or anything other than getting everything down on paper as quickly and as easily as possible.

  7. Drafting is over when: • Sketches and notes and lists and ideas have been turned into sentences and paragraphs. • There is at least a recognizable beginning, middle and ending. • The writer has gone as far as they can go without getting some feedback. • Like prewriting, in the drafting stage it is important that writers are given time and encouragement to engage in risk-free exploration of their subject matter. This is the best time to try things out.

  8. Conferencing = Feedback From the Teacher • In the conferencing stage, the writer meets with the teacher, to share his or her writing. • During conferencing, I check to make sure that you are on track with the writing.

  9. Revision = Taking Another Look • Revising means to “see again” and also includes getting reader response. • Response can come from many sources: • peer conference • small group/full class share session • six trait student assessment • discussions with friends, parents, other teachers, etc.

  10. At this point, the writer is looking for reactions and suggestions. Everything is fair game, but comments regarding grammar, punctuation, etc. should be kept to a minimum if given at all. Concerns about conventions will be addressed during editing. • When you conference during revision, you need to have specific questions that you would like to ask of the reviewer. • How can I improve my introduction? • Do you think I need to add anything in my…..? • Does this part make sense? • As a reviewer, you should also questions of the writer about things you don’t understand or places where the writing is unclear.

  11. Writers typically go through three distinct stages of revision: • Adding on. This is the easiest kind of revision to accomplish. After hearing from readers, writers often realize they have left out important details. • Moving around. As the writer adds more materials, ideas may begin to "bump" into each other or interact in unforeseen ways. Getting things in the right order becomes more and more important. • Cutting out. This is the hardest thing to do, but it is often the most valuable. By this point the writer may have accumulated far more material than he originally planned.

  12. Editing = Making Corrections • At this point, the writer will focus formally on mechanical correctness. This is the point in the process where traditional copy editing occurs. Grammar, usage, punctuation, spelling and minor text changes are the only work the paper should need at this point. • Editing can come from many different sources: • The student (ideally). • A peer editor (also good). • The teacher (only if absolutely necessary). • A parent (make your teacher aware). • The ideal result of the editing stage should be a conventionally correct and completely finished piece of writing that requires only recopying or typing and formatting. • It is only in this stage that formal lessons in conventions will be held.

  13. Publishing = Polish For PresentationPublishing = Reflect on the Work • Publication can take many forms: • posting in class or the school • submitted for formal publication to a magazine • read out loud • a performance • collected in a portfolio • Ideally no changes of any kind occur at this point except those that affect presentation. Keep in mind who your audience is and what the best form is for presenting your writing.

  14. Reflection or a final assessment can also take a variety of forms: • Formal Six Trait teacher assessment. • Small group or full class share session (informal verbal response). • Student self assessment (six trait or other). • Student written reflection (often for a portfolio). • Peer review (formal written response). • Parent written response (usually for a portfolio).

  15. Assessment is often the most valuable stage in the process. There is so much potential for learning when writers revisit their finished work with a constructive self-critical eye.