Think, Draw, Write is exactly what it sounds like! Students read a writing prompt and think about it first. After thinking about the prompt, they sketch a picture of their response. For example, if the prompt is, ‘What is your favorite thing to do outside in spring weather?’, then they will draw a quick picture of their favorite thing to do outside in the spring! After drawing their picture, they will then write about it.
The Power of Drawing
The purpose of drawing first is to jumpstart a student’s thoughts so that the writing comes more naturally. For our earliest writers, letting the drawing be the bridge between thoughts and written words is a powerful way to get students writing more.
As we know, when our students write more, they grow as writers. This center activity is great for K-2 students to build up writing stamina. It’s also great for students who are reluctant writers. When a reluctant writer has the opportunity to sketch a quick picture first, it helps him see how much he really had to say about a topic. Now instead of creating a story out of thin air, the student is writing a story that describes the picture that is already there!
The Think, Draw, Write Center
Step One: Print the Think, Draw, Write prompt cards. Cut them and put them on a binder ring, or in a Ziploc bag.
Step Two: Print copies of the Think, Draw, Write journals and put them in a folder. Put the folder of journals and the ring of writing cards in a book box, paper tray, or however you store your centers!
Step Three: When students go to the writing center, they flip through the rings to pick a writing prompt card that sounds interesting to them. I like providing choice in the prompts used each day. This boosts engagement, and in turn promotes stamina!
When they have chosen their prompt for the day, they flip to that page in the journal and draw their pictures and write about it. The journal can be re-used for as long as you keep these writing cards in your writing center. This is one center that could be left out for weeks, and students will still see new prompts each time they vist!