Interactive Notebooks, Writing

Writing Mini Lesson 1- Brainstorming for Interactive Notebooks

Hello all!  I am starting a series of writing lessons in what I found to be the most effective scaffolding order. This first one is about brainstorming for the year.  It will give students ideas throughout the year whenever they are in a rut and can’t think of what to write about!

As a whole group, discss the following quesions:

What do writers do?

Why are writing notebooks important?  (to write thoughts, stories, responses, etc.)


Brainstorming Ideas

Here are some things you may add to your idea’s section of your notebook.  This will set the stage for the year and give them a place to go to find things to write about.  I would suggest to either do an Interest Inventory or the following:


Heart:  Have students cut out the heart and fill it with words that tell what they love.  Use the poster to help them think of ideas.

Question Mark:  Have students cut out the question mark and have them fill it with things that want to know.

House:  List family members.  Don’t limit it to members who live with them!  Around the house, list things that their family does together…weekends, summer, mornings, evenings…etc.

I:  This is a page where they can tell more about themselves.  “I am”

Trace hand:  Use the hand or have students trace their hand.  List a feeling on each finger and one on palm.  Write examples of when they felt that way.  Use the Feelings Poster.

Treasure Map:  Draw a picture of their yard or favorite place.  Mark an x by a place where they have a favorite memory.



As a little bonus, I’m attaching a link for tracking student progress through the mini lessons!  Have students take the responsibility and track their own progress!  I found it as an effective approach for tracking!

There are two columns for tracking. “First” and “Second”. If they retest or you decide to reteach the whole class, they can record their second score. I like to give them their percentages except on the bigger writing pieces that have rubrics. Then I have them write down their rubric number 5, 3, or 1. They can easily see their strengths and weaknesses which is helpful when they develop their goals for their next writing piece.   CLICK HERE to get the page below.  I have others for Opinion Writing and Informative Writing!  They will be later in the mini lesson series!


***Follow the series of lessons with Writing Mini Lesson 2- Complete Sentences

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