A Year in Writing: A Digital Writing Journal

I’m really excited about this one and so are the students!

For this new year, I’m starting a new way to track my students’ writing throughout the year and keep all of our conference notes in one place.

One thing I struggle with in writing is keeping track of all of my writing conference notes and goals with my students, and knowing what I’ve read and haven’t conferenced about in my students’ journals. It’s too much to carry all of the journals back and forth, and I just can’t get all of my students’ writings read in the hours of each day at school. Do you have this problem?

So, this year, my students are doing the majority of their writing in a new, Digital Writing Journal. I call it “A Year in Writing”. I’m excited about this tool in Google Slides for a few key reasons:

  1. I can carry all of their writings, for the entire year, home in one place – my computer! This means, I can read their writing, make notes, and take data any time I need!
  2. All of their writing is in one place – We can track their progress for the entire year, nothing gets lost, and I can keep all of my notes right there in their digital journal.
  3. Conferencing and Goal-Setting are visible to myself and the student! With the use of the ‘Comments” feature and the speaker notes at the bottom, all of our conversations and goal-setting statements are there in the document.
  4. Everything can be done in one place – with evidence of all! There’s always a student that loses a piece of their writing or says they revised/edited and there’s no evidence of it. Now, with the use of “Comment”, my students can highlight their errors and make a revision or edit in the comment box to show their thinking. I can do the same. Or, if they share it with a buddy for peer editing, their revising/editing buddy can use the same tool. I can see it all!
  5. Creativity – with technology at hand, so many opportunities for creativity are available! The sky is the limit!
  6. Finally – All of the writing anchor charts I need to keep for them, all of their writing lesson notes, can all be added to the digital journal for reference. No more needing extra wall space or changing out anchor charts. No more losing notes pages in binders. It’s all in one place!

I’m sure this is going to be a lifesaver for myself and my students. If you’d like to get your hands on a copy, here’s the link.

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