Whole Class Journals

My students love to write - and especially to share what they've written. As I walk around and conference with students during writing time, countless hands fly up asking me to "read what I have so far!" And I always do. I want them to know that I'm proud of their effort. That their stories, essays, and journal entries are important to me because of the time they took in writing them. I want to instill pride in their work. 

Another way I encourage students to put forth effort and produce quality work is by displaying it, either on a bulletin board or in the class library. When we do projects, either take-home, in-class, or in the computer lab, I like to compile the work into a folder or a binder and place it in the library for the students to look through. They LOVE reading/seeing what their classmates have done. My heart swells when I see a student approach a classmate and say something like, "I loved your research project on Russia - it was so creative how you listed important facts inside the picture of the flag."

SO - getting to the point of this entry. I wanted to find a way for students to share what they've written without me having to rip out each of their journal entries to combine in a book in my library. So, I adapted an idea from the blogger of "I Love My Classroom" (http://www.ilovemyclassroom.blogspot.com/) to make Whole Class Journals

I've created 6 journals with a different prompt on the cover of each. When the students have free time or specific journal-writing time, they can grab one of the journals, answer the question, draw a picture, and then place it back in the basket for classmates to read and enjoy!

Here are the prompts I created, but you can absolutely customize them for your group of students. Remember, you don't want these questions to be too personal or else students might feel uncomfortable sharing their answers with others.

Click here to download my Whole Class Journal Prompts

*I bought 5x7 journals from Staples (3/pack) and printed the prompts on Avery shipping labels (#8164) 
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