Student Clues and Cues

Last week when I finished a lesson on writing in a grade five class, a student blurted, “I want to keep learning!”

I smiled in the moment and probably said something like, “I’m so glad.” But even now, five days later, his comment has stuck with me. As a teacher, perhaps there’s no better compliment than an exclamation like his.

So what was it that had him so engaged? What did I do on that particular day that motivated and excited him?

I think my use of mentor texts and the intentionality of the lesson contributed. I also think the students felt empowered as writers because I gave them specific tools to help them revise their work. That day, writing became manageable for those grade five students.

When do your students express the most excitement over their learning? How do you know that a lesson has been effective? What clues and cues do your students give you?

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