Basic Tools for Beginning Writers
by Betty Schultze
Pembroke Publishers, 2008
$24.95, 136 pp, reproducible pages, index, adult
This excellent resource is for teachers of Kindergarten to Grade 2 students and children with special needs, to help establish the basic, foundational skills and tools that are prerequisites for more complex writing tasks. Based on the premise that without a strong foundation it is difficult to build subsequent skills, the author begins at the beginning with holding a pencil correctly, learning the sounds of each letter of the alphabet and recognizing and using conventional spelling and punctuation. The activities outlined in Basic Tools for Beginning Writers are drawn from the author’s own K to Grade 4 teaching experience and her work as an early literacy specialist, and from ideas shared by classroom teachers. The result is a resource simply packed with practical strategies that can be used and incorporated into routines throughout the school day that will support your students’ progress into literacy. To accommodate the range of ability found in every classroom, ideas for “Making it Simpler” and “Increasing the Challenge” are outlined for each activity. Sections entitled “Reflecting on the Learning” and “Notes on Assessment” are also included. Teachers of very young children will find this resource to be a valuable source of inspiration and useable ideas from a knowledgeable colleague. Betty also co-authored What’s Next for this Beginning Writer? also published by Pembroke Publishers.
This review is from Canadian Teacher Magazine’s March 2009 issue.