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An Effective Framework for Primary-Grade Guided Writing Instruction

by Sharan A. Gibson, Ph.D.

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An Effective Framework for Primary-Grade Guided Writing Instruction

Grades 3 – 5
Type Journal
Published December 2008
Publisher International Literacy Association



This article describes the theory and procedures for a specific format of primary-grade small-group writing instruction (guided writing lessons) based on (a) a sociocultural perspective, (b) Clay's theories of literacy learning, and (c) the author's study of second-grade guided writing instruction. Guided writing lessons are described as an intensive, small-group context for instructional support and interaction between teacher and students during writing that can be folded into a classroom context, including writing workshops and interactive writing. The purpose, format, teacher prompting, and assessment procedures of guided writing lessons are demonstrated within the article through the presentation of student examples, lesson excerpts, teacher prompts for writing, and an observation form. The article also describes the use of expert observation of student behavior while writing and an analytic assessment of writing products in order to maintain a strong pace for students' learning within and across lessons.

Gibson, S.A. (2008, December). An Effective Framework for Primary-Grade Guided Writing Instruction. The Reading Teacher, 62(4), 324334. doi: 10.1598/RT.62.4.5


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