Cooperative Learning Structures that are Great for Sharing Writing

One of the most important parts of the writing process is sharing your writing, but if you are anything like me it is tricky to keep this part of the writing workshop novel. It is way too easy to slowly slide into just sharing with your table partner each day, because I mean, that's sharing right? While sharing with your table partner is certainly better than nothing, here are five ideas for spicing up how your students share their writing. 

 Inside Outside Circle

This is a really fun way to share, and students get excited about it. To make this structure work, divide your students into two equal groups. The first group forms a circle facing outward. The second group forms a circle around them facing inward so that everyone has a partner. Partners then share their writing with one another. Once you are ready to switch you can have either the inside circle, outside circle or both move. I like to do movements such as inside circle move three people to your right, and outside circle move two people to their right. That way students aren't able to predict who their next partner will be. 

Stand Up Hand Up Pair Up

This is a great structure to use if your students' writing varies in length, because instead of everyone having to switch partners at the same time, they can move to the next person as soon as they are ready. To do this structure students do exactly as it says; stand up, raise their hands in the air, and find a partner. After students partner up they each read their writing, give a compliment, and repeat the process to find a new partner. We usually continue this process for about five minutes, and students are able to meet with multiple partners. 

Round Robin

This is another quick structure that allows students to hear multiple pieces of writing, but only share once. In table groups, students take turns standing up and reading their writing. Once each person read everyone else at the table gives a compliment or asks a question. Sometimes I would give each student a sticky note to write the compliments and questions on, just to mix things up. 

Quiz Quiz Trade

Quiz Quiz Trade is one of my all time favorite structures, and this is a little spin on that. Students stand up hand up pair up and trade papers to read. This way, the author is hearing their writing being read by someone else and allows them to listen objectively. Once both papers are read they switch papers back so that they have their own, and find their next partner to repeat the process. 

Gallery Walk

This is a great strategy is you have a bit longer to spend on sharing writing. Instead of students reading their own writing they simply leave it on their desk for others to read. I prefer to have my students flow naturally from piece to piece, but if your class needs a bit more structure you could format it just like a scoot game with a particular order.

For more great ways to integrate cooperative learning into writing check out this book (affiliate link) Cooperative Learning for Writing.

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