Writing A-Z has come of age in an decade of changing strategies and expectations for teaching writing. One of seven sister sites under the Learning A-Z umbrella, it is a well-organized, terrific resource for teaching writing instruction in grades K through 6.
The site is organized into three major categories: Lessons, Skills, and Tools. Let’s take a look at the Lessons section first. It has two major components: one for emerging writers and the other for genres. Under emerging writers, teachers will find a series of lesson plans for six stages of writing, from single words to two complex sentences. Student checklists, prompts (including photos), and templates for writing are available to download or print. in the genres section, teachers will find a wide range of lesson plans and samples for beginning through fluent writers in the following types of writing: expository, narrative, persuasive, procedural, and transactional. Each genre contains a variety of subtopics. For example, expository writing is composed of five separate types, such as informational and biography.
The Skills section includes five mini-lessons on individual elements of composition. Under conventions, there are seven categories, such as paragraphs and punctuation. Each category includes lesson plans, student models, and practice of the related skill at various writing levels. The practice sheets for students are extremely well done. For teachers who want to provide daily practice with grammar, the Write Rights packets are a quick way to supplement instruction without overloading students with lengthy worksheets.
The Tools section is divided into two categories: Emerging Writer and Beginning through Fluent writers. As much as I value the other sections described above, the tools section is really a wonder. From videos of authors to sample research packets, rubrics to graphic organizers, the breadth of these writing tools is simply phenomenal.
I highly recommend Writing A-Z as a valuable resource for both regular and special education teachers. The materials are high quality, with super graphics and no clutter. I have yet to search for a tool that is not available on this site. This site is perfect for both beginning and experienced teachers and will easily support the wide range of writing programs being used across the country.