Teaching Students to Discover Their Writing Process through Memoirs

Janella Booker, Third Grade, E.E. Waddell Language Academy

Curriculum Unit (pdf)


This curriculum unit will teach students how to focus on a small moment in their life and write memoirs expressing their feelings and experiences about events and memories in their life.  Most importantly, they will experience and learn that there is not just one of way of utilizing the writing process as they compose their memoirs. Students will use a variety of graphic organizers, writing journal, day book, photos, favorite objects from home to help them put their feelings in writing.  Students will be exposed to a variety of picture books, memoirs written by prominent authors, fiction and nonfiction memoirs. Students will learn how to lead during writer’s workshop by identifying their individual needs and where they are in the writing process. They will be able to decide whether they need an informal or formal conference.  Informal conferences are typically 1 to 2 minutes where the student can check in with the teacher about where they are in the process. Formal conferences are typically 4 to 5 minutes where the student can focus on goal setting, planning, revision, and reflections. Students will also be taught about other conferences that can be utilized during writer’s workshop and depending on where they are in the writing process.