Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Monday Morning Journals

One of my favorite take-aways from the "DI for the Little Guy" conference with Kim Adsit that I attended in the Spring was the idea of the Monday Morning Journal.  This is such a simple idea, but so great.  

Each student has a journal (mine are just spiral-bound notebooks), and each Monday morning we'll take time to write in them.  One page per week.  

I introduced these yesterday with my class.  They spread out around the room and then they worked quietly for FIFTEEN MINUTES.  On the 5th day of school.  I just turned on quiet music, set my most favorite time timer, and away they went.  There was very little talking, very few unfocused distractions, and a whole lot of writing.
 It's an absolute free-write.  Draw or write about any little thing your heart desires!  These will be awesome to show parents at parent-teacher conferences, or to document growth (or lack thereof) over time.  I used my date stamper to mark them with the date.

In our first Monday Morning Journal entries I saw familiar text, sound spelling, emerging writing...and everything in between!

I just know that this will be an awesome addition to my weekly plan this year.  I think it will be a time that my students will love, and it will be a great formative assessment for me.  Win-win! 

Do you do anything like this with your students? 


  1. Great journals! I love the "range of ability" samples you elected to share. They are all wonderful!

    Granny Goes to School

  2. Jill, This looks like a great idea! I have a question... do you do another writing journal on other days? Because I agree...this journal would be a GREAT assessment and a good tool to explain progress to parents. But I sometimes also do journal in a more structured, mini lesson type way that isn't good for assessment since it is guided by me, but currently those types of things are also in my journals. Does this make sense? I love this idea though and want to use it!

    Crayons and Whimsy