I spent so many years trying to figure out how to grow my students’ writing stamina. I knew that I needed to increase the amount of time that students were writing in order to start to see real growth. When I finally started implementing writing journals, everything clicked.
Writing Journal Set Up
I started with a set of monthly writing journals because I just wanted to get my students excited about writing. I knew that if I could lower their resistance to writing, that I could definitely make some progress with my writers.
Each monthly journal includes:
- 20 different prompts
- Lined paper
- Fun emoji clip art
- Engaging prompts from a variety of writing genres
Increasing Writing Stamina with Writing Journals
I give students 20 writing prompts each month, even if there aren’t 20 school days during the month. I do this so that students always have a prompt that they’re interested in writing about. Some writing prompts will resonate with students more than others. You can mark off prompts ahead of time that you’re not going to use with your whole class. Then, when students seem to struggle with a prompt, you can assign them one of the extra prompts you marked off.
You can grab a sample writing journal with 10 writing prompts here if you’d like to see what the prompts look like.
Two Versions of Lined Paper
I like to include two different versions of lined paper for my writing journals. This makes it possible to use the same journal prompts across multiple grade levels if you teach more than one grade level.
Using two versions of writing paper also helps you differentiate quickly and easily by providing writing journals to students who need something a little less intimidating.
I like to include writing prompts from all writing genres to make sure that things don’t get too boring and repetitive for students.
I also like to include prompts that are related to specific holidays or “National Days.” These prompts definitely help keep students engaged in the writing journal prompts.
Increased Writing Stamina
I noticed that my students writing stamina definitely improved once we started using daily writing journals. I made them part of my routine and students would work on them right when they entered the classroom after lunch. This helped me get students on task right away, gave me a moment to check in with any students who needed support after recess, and gave students some time to work quietly and get back into the groove of the classroom.
Monthly Writing Journals
If you’re looking for a set of monthly writing journals that can be used with grades 1-5, then you’ll definitely want to check out this year-long bundle of writing journals. There is a writing journal for each month with 20 prompts each.