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Write! It's on the "tip" of my pencil!

Looking for a quick start for Ideas?  TRY THIS!

Fold an 8x11 piece of white paper into fourths.  In each square ask your student to place one idea (picture or word) that he knows something about.  That gives him 4 different ideas to choose from to start writing.  
Mike's example...
Dora the Explorer
When I ask my students to write, the last thing I want is for them to struggle with "I don't know what to write about" syndrome.  I have the students keep this four-square in their writing folders.  Instant ideas are ready to go.  I also tell Mike that when he writes or draws about dinosaurs he must put a check by that idea.  That means he cannot write about dinosaurs again until he writes about his other 3 ideas.
Mikes has more ideas...YEAH!  Turn the paper over, Mike, and add 4 more ideas or things you can write or draw!  Hurrah!  He is a writer...and on his way to more great ideas! 

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Carolyn McMahon
2795 Rossmere Street
Colorado Springs, Colorado 80919