Developing Reflective Writers
by John McCarthy 

With MS Word - Session 1

resource (pdf) or html

Online Resources - Session 2

Reflecting and Processing with Forms and Bulletin Boards (BBS)
Forms and Bulletin Boards are great as a pre-thinking and writing tool. Students share their ideas based on a reading or KWL on either tool. Everyone's comments are posted together. This is especially helpful to the student who has difficulty getting started. That person reads some of the comments by his peers before composing his own thoughts. It's okay if he has the same ideas as long as he uses his own words.  These tools are helpful for Learning Reflections to close a lesson.  

In either case, the benefit is three-fold:

  1. Every student has something to contribute in small and large group discussions.

  2. Teachers can check the thinking of every student, especially the quiet ones who rarely volunteer.

  3. Students get to review the their peers' thinking on a concept. This may influence their own thought process.


Responding to Reading

Example Two


Community Zero:   
Cyber Education: 

Login: bemyguest
Password: guest

Conferencing and Publishing with Discussion Webs
Use a discussion web as both a conferencing tool and host for publication. Post work, and have others share their comments. The author uses the comments to make further revisions. Or, after posting comments, the readers discuss their comments in small groups, while the author takes notes. Publish work so that students' peers and family can read their efforts. Positive comments and/or learning reflections can be posted in connection to the published piece.


Language Arts Students

Past Activities 

We Are Authors
Registration - Junior High |
Try the guest account: Login: john3  password: bemyguest

Other listings: 

Publish Reviews (persuasive & expository writing)
Go to a site, find a product and post a review. Places such as provide a form for students to anonymously post their thoughts. |

Sample Lessons supported by Technology
Most of these contain components for student reflection on concepts and writing.