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6 Traits Resources


The file above is my KYSTE powerpoint presentation.




These are great resources for teaching 6 Traits of Writing.

Web Resources:

www.kimskorner4teachertalk.com/writing/sixtrait/menu.htm Fantastic lesson plans and ideas here

so024.k12.sd.us/6%20+%201%20traits.htm Picture books and other great ideas organized by Trait.

msjacoby.com/6traits.html Cute songs and other Traits ideas.

www.ttms.org/PDFs/05%20Writers%20Workshop%20v001%20(Full).pdf   This PDF contains a 70+ page resource on the Traits

www.literatelearner.com/6traits/page_template6t.php  This site has great sample pages that are scored according to the Traits.

writingfix.com/  This might be my favorite Traits site. It contains great lesson ideas, writing ideas in general and ways for the students to manipulate the site to generate writing ideas.

writingfix.com/right_brain/Story_Starting_Sentences1.htm  This is one of the interactive activities on the Writing Fix site.

writing.pppst.com/6traits.html PowerPoints for the Traits

www.english-online.org.uk/games/grofdoom/advisory.htm  Great grammar game!! To begin at the login screen, click the correct words in the box (they will turn red if clicked incorrectly). Once they're correct, it'll take you to the game. Challenging and fun!

http://teacher.scholastic.com/activities/writing/index.asp?topic=persuasive This is a opinion writing activity by Scholastic

www.funbrain.com/FBSearch.php  BrainPop Games are a lot of fun. This is grade 5 but you can choose the grade that you teach.

www.brainpop.com/ Even without a login, there are great Writing lessons with quizzes here.

kidblog.org/home/  Great blog set-up for those that don't have a blog built into their class webpage

www.edmodo.com/  Social Networking Site to set up with your classroom

www.educatorstechnology.com/2012/11/5-excellent-web-toos-for-creative.html  Awesome site (ignore the typo!) with writing prompts

www.epals.com/   Find penpals around the world!

www.monsterexchange.org/ Find another class around the world; your class draws a monster and writes directions to the other class to try and draw it without seeing it. They do the same. At the end you share the picture of your monster to see if your directions made sense.



Strategies for Teaching the Traits

-One idea is to teach each of the Traits in sequence after writing the first major writing piece of the year to introduce each Trait and let the children work on this piece of writing while focusing on that Trait. The same can happen for each of the following pieces of writing except that not every Trait need to be covered for each piece of writing.

-Another idea is to teach each Trait for a month and not move on until the Trait is well understood by the children.

-Revising for a specific Trait: after the children are familiar with the Traits, they can revise a piece of writing for a Trait by noting in the margins where that Trait is strong (or weak).

-Model, model, model! My research has taught me that we can't do enough modeling for our children. They need to see us fix our own pieces, especially deep changes, not just surface-level quick fixes.

-Use picture books to teach the Traits. There are many resources available that include picture books that focus on a particular Trait.

¨Students need to connect with their audience and prompt. If they haven’t connected with them, their writing won’t be great.
¨Students learn best by being given feedback that centers around not just what to fix but also that focuses on skills that they want to improve upon.
¨Students that do not have great problem-solving skills will not easily revise. Those students that know how to think critically of their own or others’ work will be better revisers.
¨Students need to find ownership in their writing. If teachers only demonstrate surface-level changes (grammar, punctuation, spelling etc) then that’s all students will do. If teachers model thinking and questioning the placement of sections etc, students will start to look at their piece as a whole instead of surface-level changes.

Books and Articles that are good for the Traits along with Revising and Editing Work:

Going deep with 6 trait language, a guide for teachers (2006 Edition). (2006). Reno, NV: Northern Nevada Writing Project.


Forney, M. (2001). Razzle dazzle writing, Achieving Excellence through 50 target skills. Gainesville, FL: Maupin House Publishing, Inc.


Higgins, B., Miller, M., & Wegmann, S. (2006).  Teaching to the test…not! Balancing best practice and testing requirements in writing. The Reading Teacher, 60(4), 310-319.


Improving Presentation Style. (2009). The Teaching Center, Retrieved May 14, 2012 from http://teachingcenter.wustl.edu/improving-presentation-style


Stiggins, R., Arter, J., Chappuis, J., & Chappuis, S., (2006). Classroom Assessment for Student Learning Doing it right, using it well. Boston, MA:  Pearson.


Weissman, A. (2003). Help! How Can I Do the Six Traits, Too?. Knowledge Quest, 32, 51.


Duijnhouwer, H., Prins, F.J., & Stokking, K.M. (2012). Feedback providing improvement strategies and reflection on feedback use: Effects on students’ writing motivation, process and performance. Learning and Instruction, 22, 171-184.

Lipstein, R.L., & Renninger, K.A. (2007). Interest for writing: How teachers can make a difference. The English Journal, 96(4), 79-85.

Beers, K. (2003).  When kids can’t read, what teachers can do: a guide for teachers, 6-12.Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Culham, R.  6+ 1 Traits of Writing. (1995). New York, NY: Scholastic Professional Books.

Portalupi, J & Fletcher, R. (2001).  Nonfiction craft lessons: teaching  information writing K-8. Portlane, ME: Stenhouse.

Lane, B. & Bernabei, G. Why we must run with scissors. (2001). Shoreham, VT: Discover Writing Press. Inc.


Brassell, D. (2006).  Readers for life, the ultimate reading fitness guide, K-8. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Stemper, J. Enhancing student revising and editing skills through writing conferences and peer editing. (2002). (Doctoral Dissertation). Retrieved from         http://www.eric.ed.gov/contentdelivery/servlet/ERICServlet?accno=ED465187

McGarrell, H. & Verbeem, J. (2007). Motivating revision of drafts through formative feedback.   ELT, 61(3), 228-236.