1. Teaching Ideas

Crafting Powerful Small Moments

We are working on crafting powerful small moments.

We know that authors tell meaningful stories. We began by reading ‘Owl Moon; by Jane Yolen, a mentor text that focuses on ‘small moments’.

Session 1: Generate meaningful ideas for small moment writing.

Owl Moon is a story about Heidi, the author’s daughter, who went looking for owls with her dad. It’s a beautiful ‘small moment’ story that captures and shares details about the winter night, the trees, the snow and mysterious nighttime bird. As we read the story, we thought about meaningful moments that WE wanted to write about. 

Session 2: Capture ideas.

We have been jotting down ideas for writing in our planning sheet, which is in our Writer’s Workshop folder.  

We looked at a few writing samples and discussed the strategies good writers use. The students explained that in this piece of writing, the writer remembered to:

  • use a capital letter at the beginning of a sentence
  • keep spaces between words
  • use different types of punctuation
  • match the writing with the pictures
  • print words neatly on the line
  • use capital letters to show that some words were important
  • stretch the writing across 3 pages
  • use interesting words

We also discussed how the writer wanted story to be read! 

We revisited the Anchor Chart ‘How to Write a Story’. 

We discussed how we might add details to stretch the beginning.

We talked about the different ways we can bring our stories to life. We know that talking about our story and creating a sketch before writing is a great way to plan. 

We talked about planning our story. What strategies and tools might we use to do this?

We discussed a strategy ‘Telling Across Fingers’. We know that when we have opportunities to first talk about our stories, we can then think more about adding details to stretch our writing across pages. 

Session 3: Stretch out small moments.

Then, we looked at some pieces of writing. We noticed that some writers jot down key words at the top of the  page to help them stretch out the small moment. 

We continue to practice the strategies and tools we have been discussing that will help us grow as writers.


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