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marshfield memories
the writing teacher's companion

Joy Write: Cultivating High-Impact, Low-Stakes Writing

Nothing helps writers grow like practice. But not just any kind of practice will do. You’ve got to bring the joy! In Joy Write, beloved writer and teacher Ralph Fletcher shows you how.
“A writer needs wide latitude so she can bring all her intelligence to the task,” Ralph observes. “Assigning a particular format—a hamburger essay, for instance—would curtail this play, if not eliminate it entirely.” That’s why, instead of teacher-driven assignments, Joy Write shares the whys and the how of giving students time and autonomy for the playful, low-stakes writing that leads to surprising, high-level growth.

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The Writing Teacher’s Companion: Embracing Choice, Voice, Purpose, and Play

Boost writing instruction with an all-new resource from Ralph Fletcher! Celebrated author and educator Ralph Fletcher provides a practical and illuminating guide to writing workshop for both new and veteran teachers. The Writing Teacher’s Companion describes components of a successful workshop, as well as the best ways to get the workshop started and sustain it successfully across the school year. Fletcher, a wise and witty writing companion, shows us why encouraging choice, purpose, and play helps students find their voices and produce strong, effective writing.

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Boy WritersWhat Schools Can Do to Help Boys Succeed

Ralph Fletcher quoted in recent Time Magazine article Work With the Young Male Imagination

In his delightful Boy Writers: Reclaiming their Voices, celebrated author and writing instructor Ralph Fletcher advises teachers to consider their assignments from the point of view of boys. Too many writing teachers, he says, take the “confessional poet” as the classroom ideal. Personal narratives full of emotion and self-disclosure are prized; stories describing video games, skateboard competitions or a monster devouring a city are not.

Read more: Christina Hoff Sommers: 3 Things Schools Can Do to Help Boys Succeed | Read More

What A Writer NeedsWhat A Writer Needs

“What a Writer Needs is beautifully written and will move readers to become better writers and better writing teachers!”
Gail Boushey and Joan Moser, authors of The Daily 5

“I truly feel my work is grounded in the fundamental ideas I learned from What a Writer Needs. Reading the second edition, I realize it’s as relevant today as it was then.”
Katie Wood Ray, author of About the Authors

“Since we cannot bring Ralph home with us to help us write our own stories or help us teach our students to write theirs, we are fortunate enough to have the next best thing—this book. For that, and for Ralph Fletcher, for his books, his stories about his family, the joy that shines through on every page of this book. I am very grateful and a better teacher to boot.”
Jim Burke, author of The English Teacher’s Companion