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Volume 3 Number 6

Harry & Rosemary Wong remind us that, "The effective teacher is prepared"...
Effective Teaching by Harry & Rosemary Wong Teaching Procedures Is Teaching Expectations
Promoting Learning by Marv Marshall How The Horse Whisperer Trains a Wild Mustang in 30 Minutes
4 Blocks by Cheryl Sigmon Why Are You Doing That?
Instant Ideas for Busy Teachers by Barbara Gruber and Sue Gruber Choosing Workshops, Seminars & Courses…that are Right for You!
Ask the School Psychologist by Beth Bruno Tips for Motivating Young Children
Online Classrooms by George París Conway Assessing Online Learning -- A Brief Overview
The Eclectic Teacher by Ginny Hoover Homework---Hmmm
The Busy Educator's Monthly Five (5 Sites for Busy Educators) by Marjan Glavac Sites For Beginning Teachers Part I
Ask the Literacy Teacher by Leigh Hall Developmentally Appropriate Writing for Kindergarten
Index of Articles
Index of Regular Features
Index of Informational Items
Gazette Home Delivery:

About Leigh Hall...
Leigh Hall is a doctoral student at Michigan State University in the Department of Teacher Education where she specializes in Literacy. Before coming to Michigan, Leigh was a middle school language arts and social studies teacher in Houston, Texas. It was this experience that introduced her to working with students who had a variety of abilities and needs in the areas of reading and writing. Leigh has experience in working with children who have learning disabilities and who perform below grade level. She is also certified to work with students who do not speak English as their native language.

Upon completing her degree from Michigan State, Leigh hopes to start a career as an Assistant Professor and to do research that addresses students who struggle with reading. She hopes that what she learns both now and in the future can be passed on to teachers in a way that is useful to both them and their students.

Questions for this column that pertain to the teaching of reading and writing are welcomed. Questions in this area that deal with students performing below grade level, are not native speakers of English or who have learning disabilities are strongly encouraged. In addition, teachers from all subject areas and grade levels should feel free to submit their questions. This column is meant to help us all think about how we use reading and writing in our classrooms and is not meant to be exclusive to elementary teachers or to reading and language arts teachers.

Please submit your questions to:

Ask the Literacy Teacher
by Leigh Hall
Developmentally Appropriate Writing for Kindergarten

Please submit your questions to:

Dear Literacy Teacher,

I am doing research on developmentally appropriate writing for kindergarten and I am looking for current resources. I am using the KidWrite program of open journal writing and would like to find information to support its use. Any suggestions would be welcome! Thanks, Mary Ellen McCloy

Dear Mary,

A recent search of the ERIC database turned up no articles, research or otherwise, on the use of the KidWrite program. This suggests that there has been no research on the program itself though the program may have been designed around research generated by others on the topic of journaling and writing in kindergarten.

I am not entirely sure what kind of resources you are looking for. If you are interested in learning more about research and what it says about journal writing for kindergartners, then you should check out the ERIC website at: You will most likely to have to access a university library to obtain the articles ERIC turns up for you, but it should be helpful in this type of search.

There are some websites you can access to get lesson plan ideas. These include:

  1. KYVL for Teachers:
  2. Gigglepotz:
  3. A to Z Teacher Stuff:

These web sites are just a small sample of what you can find. I received many returns by searching under the heading, "journal writing; kindergarten; lesson plans".

Possible book resources for you might include:

  1. Interactive Writing: How Language & Literacy Come Together, K-2

    by Andrea McCarrier, Gay Su Pinnell, Irene C. Fountas

  2. Making Words : Multilevel, Hands-On Developmentally Appropriate Spelling and Phonics Activities

    by Patricia M. Cunningham, Dorothy P. Hall, Tom Heggie (Illustrator)

  3. Writing Down the Days: 365 Creative Journaling Ideas for Young People
    (Revised and Updated)
    by Lorraine M., M.A. Dahlstrom

I am not sure I have completely answered your question. If this is the case, please write me back and let me know how I might help you further.

Past Gazette Articles by Leigh Hall