Empowering Writers

Toolbox: Powerful Models

Powerful Models



The Opinion Pillar

The Opinion Pillar Opinion Writing requires the author to respond to an issue or question with logical reasoning in an organized fashion. The Opinion Pillar mirrors the Expository Pillar with minor shifts in language. Due to the similar structure and expectations for opinion writing, students need to have a firm grasp of informative writing in […]


The Expository Pillar

Organization – Expository writing, by its very nature, requires careful organization. In order to deliver information in a way in which the reader can easily grasp, information must be arranged and presented in a logical, sequential manner, with like details grouped together. Often times, students, when writing about a topic, simply list details in random order, as they come […]


Narrative Writing Diamond

The Narrative Writing Diamond

We encourage students to use the Narrative Writing Diamond as a pre-writing graphic organizer to plan their narrative stories.  This provides a simple, basic story plan on which to build. Student’s can use organizers like this to help them translate their story summary or pre-writing plan to a fully elaborated piece of writing. The Narrative […]


Using Language Prompts

How do students know what they need to write? What structure to choose? What genre do I use? Is this narrative or expository? Students are often confronted with assignments that use specific language cues. These language cues offer insight into the genre and purpose of the response, however, students often cannot discern that language and […]


Modeling: The most important step in the Methodology

How frustrating is it when your students are struggling with writing, your district poses strict guidelines on the volume of writing they must produce, and all you seem to do is push them? What should be a creative, rewarding critical thinking experience can begin to feel like rolling a boulder up the side of a […]