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Why It’s Important to Link Reading and Writing in the Classroom

Written by Jennifer O’Shea  |  9 Apr 2019
Reading & Writing banner with a book, pencils and sheets of paper

Reading and writing should always be linked together. Many teachers are taught that because they have a whole reading curriculum, writing can be fit in here and there. However, throughout every lesson whether it be reading or math, writing can be incorporated into each lesson plan in a specific way. Looking at a teacher’s lesson plan, you will see Reading, Math, Social Studies, Science and Writing. But why does writing only have to be taught as an individual time block? This article will help teachers understand why linking reading and writing in the classroom is significant to student’s success.

Misconceptions about writing

To start, a misconception is that writing should be taught on its own, once a day. A teacher’s main focus is usually on reading and math during the school day and adding in whatever they have time for in other time slots. This is where writing usually gets pushed aside and skipped over to incorporate more time for math or reading. At the same time, many believe, if they miss their writing block, there is no reading to teach. Luckily, that is not true! Incorporating writing throughout other time blocks such as math, science and social studies, can help link between reading and writing.

Another misconception is that reading can only pair with writing during the reading block. This is luckily untrue because reading is incorporated in every subject, just as much as writing is. For example, when teaching a science lesson about Life Science, students have might have to reflect on their thoughts after reading about why dinosaurs are like lizards. Instead of having students turn and talk, this is the perfect time to incorporate writing. By linking both reading and writing together, you know have incorporated these two important skills into another subject area throughout the day.

How to link reading and writing

Literacy circles are a great way to bridge the gap when linking reading and writing. Literacy circles can be used by all different ages. Finding resources for literacy circles are getting easier, instead of recreating the wheel.

BoomWriter provides great technology options for students in high school who are reading The Crucible. The lesson is having students create their own modern retelling of The Crucible. Not only will you get questions that students have to use in their writing about their reading, but they can type it and share it with classmates. The standards that are addressed in the writing assignment for teachers to easily grade students on.

Another great example to help bridge the gap between writing and reading is by using the lesson plan for celebrating National Poetry Month through BoomWriter. They provide to teacher’s a ton of poetry and lessons to go with them. Each poem can turn into a mini lesson based on the language that the authors are using throughout the poem.

After reading mentor texts to students, they can take what they heard and apply it into their own writing pieces. This is a lifelong skill that needs to be taught early. Children being able to go through a book, find the specific examples and apply it to their own writing.

Bridge the gap

Finally, teachers link writing with reading because it helps students to become better writers through reading and practice. Reading mentor texts with students give teachers great examples to model. Author’s use specific skills in their picture books and teachers can use this to help model to students through the writing process. Implementing writing processes across curriculum can help with reading during math, science and social studies. Helping students make the connection between reading and writing across curricula can help them gain more experience. When introduced together instead of its own isolated skill, it can help support the development of all skills throughout reading, writing and processing.

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