So, the rule during our Writer’s Workshop is “When you think you’re done, you’ve just begun!” But what does that mean for those students who finish early? Read on to find some of our favorite writing activities for early finishers!
Writing Activities for Early Finishers: Writing Center
I love my writing center! I did an entire post dedicated to my writing center. You can find it here. A writing center can also be SUPER simple. Really all you need for a writing center is paper. A super basic writing center could have just lined paper and blank paper. Trust me, your students will have a ton of ideas for just blank paper.
Adding a stapler is a game changer! Then, your students can make their own mini-books. You can also teach your students how to make one-page mini-books. You can find a video on how to do that HERE. Students LOVE making mini books. I have a free mini-book template that you can grab in my Free Resource Library. If you don’t already subscribe to my e-mail list, you can sign up below! 🙂
This is another favorite of my students. These do take a little teaching beforehand, but the kiddos LOVE them. I store them in Ziploc baggies or these plastic envelopes that I got from Amazon (affiliate link). This post does contain affiliate links to Amazon. If you do purchase something through my links I receive a small commission at no cost to you!
You will need the game board, paper, and dice or a spinner (I have the kiddos use a pencil and a paper clip). Your student will spin or roll what they are writing (song, poem, letter). Then, they spin or roll for what they are going to write about! This is especially helpful for those students who have trouble coming up with writing topics. Want to try them? Sign up for my newsletter and grab this little freebie!
Writing Cootie Catchers
Cootie Catchers is one of the super fun writing activities for early finishers in my classroom! There is always one kiddo who comes in knowing how to make them. I always recruit that kiddo to help me! We spend some time learning how to make cootie catchers at the beginning of the year. Then, I have super fun writing cootie catchers available at certain times in the writing center!
Want to try them, I do have this fun freebie (this one is for Halloween). Once they have made their cootie catcher, they can either use it alone or with a friend. They choose a setting, then move the cootie catcher back and forth a few times to show the characters. You can have your students choose one or two characters. Once they choose their character, they pick up the flap and see the plot of their story! You can read about it HERE!
When we use them together, we make our choices then tell our story to our partner first. Then, they can give feedback and other ideas before the students go back to write!
Another fun idea is to team write! Have one student choose the setting, one student choose the characters, and then both choose a plot. Then, they can orally tell the story together, sharing ideas. When they are finished, they can write the story together, or they can write their own versions! My students love team writing!
Writing Activities for Early Finishers: Writing Paper Choices
Sometimes it is as simple as providing some novel choices of writing paper! My student LOVE blank paper, but sometimes it takes a little more to get them motivated! Novelty is always a good thing. Some examples of paper that you could put out: graphing paper (the kind with the little squares), construction paper, or scrapbook paper. If you are looking for some other types of paper, you can find all kinds of themed paper using google.
One thing that I love to show my students is how to make a card. Simple enough, fold a piece of paper in half, draw a picture on the front, and write your message on the inside. They love it!
Some of my favorite papers to put out, I created. My students LOVE using comic strip paper, letter writing paper, e-mail paper, trading card paper, Instagram paper, etc. Want to check them out? You can find all of these paper templates HERE!
Writing on the computer
As far as writing activities for early finishers go, another favorite of my students is using their devices for writing. This also takes some pre-teaching, but it is worth it! I like to teach my students how to use Google Slides, but you could do Google Docs as well. I share a Digital Journal with them. We learn how to make a copy, how to rename their journals, how to delete text that is already there, how to make copies of the “digital paper”, how to add images, and how to draw. They LOVE writing in their digital journals!
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