Baby Steps

This student is writing a story about her mom on the iPad.

They say Rome wasn’t built in a day and that things done well take time. I especially know this to be true for first graders. As I’ve explained in previous blogs, my goal is to help my students become digitally literate. In order to do this, I know I can’t show them the big picture the first day. I can’t expect immediate proficiency with complex tasks. I am trying to follow the gradual release model of responsibility and am taking baby steps with my willing class. Last week my students practiced writing in “PDF Notes” using a simple poem. My objective was for them to be comfortable holding a stylus pen and writing their name. I didn’t even expect it to be super neat! Today I felt confident that they were ready to move to something a little harder. I uploaded the writing template that our district uses for writer’s workshop. It’s something they are familiar with from kindergarten and we’ve been using it since the second day of school. Beforehand I wondered if it would be a disaster. I was ready to scrap the whole thing, but then we did our work on writing round. The class worked longer than yesterday by doubling their stamina. We had four pieces of writing to share at the end. They weren’t finished, but they had great ideas. They were even neatly written! Baby steps pay off…


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