You all know how much I talk about writer’s workshop and how much growth I see in my students. One question I’m often asked is how to get started with writer’s workshop. I personally love to start with the setup so that my students are prepared for writing. When I was in the classroom, that looked like setting up writer’s workshop folders and journals.
How to Set Up Writer’s Workshop Folders and Journals
I liked to spend the first week or so really working to set expectations and introduce tools. Our folder was definitely a tool we used every day. I talked about how writers write a lot and always keep things until they are ready to clean things out. Since we are writers, we will use our folders to keep our writing!
We would set up our folders using a cover or label for the front and then put a red sticker on one side and a green sticker on the other. This is how we kept track of the writing that we were done with and the writing that we were still working on.
Depending on your school and district, you may have certain requirements in place for writing. With my kindergarten students, we started the year off with blank paper inside of writer’s workshop folders. Throughout the first semester, we would work through free writing to introduce the basic conventions of writing. Finally, we would begin some writing units of study to really build a strong foundation and love of writing.
In first grade, we started our writer’s workshop folders with paper that was half lined and half blank for illustrations. After reviewing the basic conventions of writing, we dove right into using mentor texts that help us as authors develop stronger writing skills.
FREE Writer’s Workshop Folder and Journal Covers
To help make launching writer’s workshop easier and setting things up a breeze, I created some FREE folder and journal covers for you to use in your classroom. All you have to do is download, print, cut, and glue! This would also be a great job for a parent volunteer if you have them at the beginning of the year (or end of the year for the next year).
If you’re looking for even more freebies and tips for writer’s workshop, I have a blog post roundup that has tons of helpful blogs, tips, and free downloads for you to use.
Let’s make this year’s writer’s workshop the best yet! If you have any questions at all, leave them below and I’ll be sure to answer them!