This is really a LANGUAGE ARTS question, but I'm wondering if anyone out there is using the "Write Source" textbook series for writing & grammar?  I've got ONE sample copy that I've been using and I love it. I really would like to get a set of them for each of our 3-5 grade classrooms. Let me know your thoughts if you've used this series.

 

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Michelle, if the series you are talking about includes the "Write on Track" and "Writer's Express"; I have used both and have found them to be valuable complements to my LA instruction. One thing to be mindful of however, is that these are geared towards native English speakers in my opinion. Due to the necessities of classroom differentiation in my school district, with high percentages of ELL/ESL students, few teachers use these textbooks as "stand-alone" guidebooks for writing or grammar instruction. Rather, they become one of many resources integrated into our LA instruction.

Third graders and fourth graders in my classes found them relatively accessible and rich in providing excellent guidance and modeling (in terms of essential grammar/writing styles/sentence structure/etc.), however to the students just learning English or challenged with ADHD or diagnosed in the autism spectrum the books are difficult to say the least.

Bottom line, for me, as I teach my first year of 4th grade (yay!) after 7 straight years in third is that I use these textbooks as a "ready resource" almost daily, to complement or supplement other textual resources and online materials. Frequently, since I use a SMARTBoard and write lessons in Notebook I will scan the pages or sections from Writer's Express and use them for whole-group modeling that way - of course, the cool part of SMARTBoard is that students can interface with the screen and write in their responses with the e-pen.

Our school district, like so many, tends to use a "shotgun pattern" approach to LA instruction and has gone through decades of cycling through the many different methods of LA teaching - which has created quite a kaleidoscopic collection of resource materials lurking about in the LA book-room "closet" in our school! Again, due to the unique needs of the student population we are encouraged to implement multiple strategies, culled from varieties of texts, to guide our LA instruction.

My colleagues who primarily are working with higher ratios of ELL and SE and Non-Cat students don't use these books much - the instructional language is not geared towards their population, we find. However, my students are primarily native or advanced in their academic abilities, and they enjoy the books.

Hope this gave you some "food for thought"!

Adam
Adam,
Thanks so much for your review. I read it a while ago, but haven't had TIME to reply. I certainly AGREE that the textbook should be one of many RESOURCES that support your curriculum. I am glad to hear both your positive and critical comments about the Write Source textbooks. I will certainly SHARE your thoughts with others as we consider resources at our next curriculum meeting.
Thank you!
-Michelle
Michelle,
Time? What's that? LOL.... My students begin their state testing this Tuesday. All I can say is - thank goodness the kids are only taking 3 assessments in this grade level, compared to 5 assessments in third grade!

We are all watching as our students seem to be "unraveling" right before our eyes - in my group, it's become all Dr. Phil all the time! Geez.....it's like all of a sudden, every kid forgot all they ever knew about respectful behavior, classroom rules, and common sense!

I suppose the thought of summer break must be a bit early on their minds this term....

Adam

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