First-graders at Van Buren Elementary School recently celebrated the end of a unit in their writing program with a publishing party. They invited their parents and other family members to school to read to them and to show them the progress they have made in making their writing more readable with proper spacing, capitalization, spelling and good penmanship.
The unit is part of "Units of Study for Primary Writing," a writing program created by Lucy Calkins, a leading expert in writing curriculum. The district initially launched the writing program in kindergarten through second grade and expanded it to include third through fifth grade this school year.
The writing program stresses the use of celebration to mark student milestones in order to sustain student excitement for writing.
Anya Pusztai, a first-grader at Van Buren Elementary School, reads aloud to her mother Cheryl. She was excited to show her mother what she has been learning as a young writer.