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Friday, October 20, 2017


October 20, was the National Day on Writing. For weeks, I tried determine how to incorporate the day into my AVID class. We do write, but you see, it had been a long week for my students. They took the PSAT, and then they had to learn about the Pythagorean theory the same week! I had no desire to bog them down with a lengthy writing assignment. 

Fortunately, I ran across a trending hashtag on Twitter: #TwoSentenceHorrorStory. I started reading some amazing short tales and realized that there was no way my students could complain about writing two sentences. 

Being me, I presented the writing assignment to my classes as something dreadful. They groaned and complained about having to write until I said, "You only have to write two sentences." Boy, did their attitudes change quickly. After sharing some examples from the Twitter-verse, my students were excited to participate in the activity. I did clarify that scary is different for each person, sharing this example for them that I wrote:

That is, by far, one of the most terrifying experiences for me. It was bad enough that there were only three yesterday. 

I have to admit that the kids went above and beyond my expectations. I am not sure the nightmares have stopped yet. Here are some of my favorites:

You might have to be an AVID teacher to appreciate this one. 

I liked this lesson because it was short and sweet in addition to being highly engaging. It could be used as a time-filler or a warmup. The tone could be modified to anything one is trying to teach: humor, sadness, grief. I can see a great deal of potential.

In addition, the limitation of two sentences kept the affective filter low for my ELLs and my struggling writers. And because we wrote on a Padlet board, we were all able to truly appreciate the madness of our minds. 

Happy writing!