Crane Country Day School Established 1928

Nurturing and Celebrating Young Writers

Karen Ohrn

In an experiential classroom kids learn by doing. They learn from trying, experimenting, taking on a role, and even thinking about things from a different perspective. 

Recently I came across an excellent quote about being a writer from author Stephen King:

“‎If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot...” (Sedita, Joan)

- StePHen King

It makes sense that writers are voracious readers because, of course, writers learn from and are inspired by reading other writers' work. An important element to nurturing our young writers is to make sure we give them ample time to read, write, and share.

The good news is that reading and writing are two activities we love to do at Crane School!

From personal narratives and journaling to descriptive writing, research reports and poetry, at every grade level students are given the opportunity to express themselves through their writing. When students are given time to hone their writing skills and opportunity to let their voice shine, they are actually learning by doing. They learn as they move through different stages of writing including brainstorming, conferencing, editing, rewriting, and publishing. 

One of my favorite writing activities is doing a quick write. A quick write can be 10 minutes or less of responsive or topical writing. Even the most reluctant writers find themselves jotting down their thoughts. It is no surprise that this precious writing time often inspires the most creative ideas!

Listening to and watching our students read their writing is one of the most rewarding parts of my job. I am looking forward to celebrating all of our young writers this year!

How can you help develop your child’s writing skills at home? 

Karen Ohrn
Second Grade Teacher & Teaching Fellow Co-Chair

Read More from Focus on Learning

Experiencing Learning Through Our Children's Eyes
Christine Bouma

One school day afternoon during the onset of the pandemic, my seventh grade son joyfully announced that we would be building a bird shelter or feeder. It was part of a project for his science class with Mr. Yates, he said, and he quickly began investigating his options. While I’d like to say we accomplished our plan to build a box for the elusive Great Horned Owl that sometimes hoots nearby, we eventually traded this lofty goal for a purchased hummingbird feeder.  The two of us constructed a makeshift stand from some wood pieces we foraged from our shed, and prominently placed it visibly outside our living room.

Read More about Experiencing Learning Through Our Children's Eyes
2020-21-GillisSara-Joy
Sara Gillis

I have always loved spending time outside. Growing up, this looked like summers spent hiking and camping in Vermont and years spent playing outdoor sports no matter the season (Hello, winters in upstate New York!). I had never heard of “experiential education.” For me, school and learning took place inside a classroom, and play was outside.  

Read More about Unexpected Classrooms