Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Catch a Small Moment!

Hello Everyone!
It is no secret that I love teaching writing to my firsties. Today we talked about how the authors of some of our favorite books write about "small moments. In her book, "Small Moments-Personal Narrative Writing," Lucy Calkins describes the action of these authors as taking a small moment of life and stretching it out to make even longer stories.  My kiddos already know that they write best about what they know--from their own schema, but today I wanted them to "catch" one of their small moments.  We donned our "safari" hats and caught some small ideas on sticky notes, made some lists,  visualized those moments in our minds, and began our "small moment" piece. We are discovering our own stories! 
Our Small Moment Anchor chart

 Catch a small moment. Picture that moment in your head. Talk about the details of that moment. Draw that moment, and write about the action!

I got the safari hats from the Dollar Tree this summer! I knew I would find a good use for them!!

Small Moment Catcher hats are ready!

For your printable of our "Small Moment" writing activity, click here

I was so excited at the amount of writing my kids did today.  Many of them didn't want to stop!  We will work hard tomorrow and the rest of the week.  I am so looking forward to conferring with each and every one of my "Small Moment Catchers!"

I hope you catch one of your own small moments and discover a story!


  1. I want to come live in your classroom Nancy! You are amazing and so creative. You need to remind me again where you teach in Texas because I would LOVE to meet you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Heather's Heart

    1. Hi Heather,
      I live and teach in Allen, Texas. We do need to meet up!! You are an inspiration to me!
      :) Nancy

  2. I LOVE this idea. We just started learning about Personal Narratives and Small Moment stories on Monday. Thanks for sharing : )


  3. Nancy, I love this. Thank you for sharing all of your ideas.
    Primary Paradise

  4. Heather- E-mail me and we can talk about a meet up! I would so love you meet you as well! You inspire me with your own posts!!

  5. Thanks so much, can't wait to share with my first grade team!!

  6. Just found your blog today! So glad I did!
    I am happy to link up with a fellow first grade teacher. I would be honored to have you stop by and enter my special author giveaway!
    Ms. Marciniak's First Grade Critter Cafe
    Celebrate and Join my 100th Follower Ultimate Giveaway: Skype Author Visit!

  7. Thank you so much for sharing these pages! Love it!

    Thanks for sharing so much!!!!

  9. great idea Nancy VandenBerge , could you please write your email or send me

  10. This is such an awesome idea! Thank you so much for sharing! What fun, fun, fun! Thank you SO much for sharing. My kids would love this. :)
    Kindergarten: Holding Hands and Sticking Together

  11. I teach in an international school in Norway and sadly have only just seen this so I am ordering safari hats from the U.S. right now (cheaper than the UK)! It is wonderful you have also provided the small writing pack with it - awesome and very generous - thank you!

  12. Hi Nancy,

    I am a 1st grade ICT teacher and we are currently actively writing small moments. I love your hat idea! Was wondering where I can find the "small moment catcher" to put on the hats.

    Thanks in advance.

  13. This is perfect! Thank you for your creativity and for sharing!!


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