Patterns of Wonder: Inviting Emergent Writers to Play with the Conventions of Language (Paperback)
Whitney La Rocca and Jeff Anderson adapt their vibrant approach to grammar instruction in Patterns of Wonder: Inviting Emergent Writers to Play with the Conventions of Language, PreK-1. Here, young, emergent writers are invited to notice the conventions of language and build off them in this inquiry-based approach to instructional grammar.
The book comes with standards-aligned lessons that can be incorporated in just 10 minutes a day. Patterns of Wonder’s responsive, invitational approach allows young students to play and inquire about language and experiment, take risks, and have fun.
Inside you’ll find:
- Ready-to-use lesson plan sets that pinpoint and build across the most common needs of emergent writers
- An adjusted invitational process adapted for young learners, and the Phases of Emergent Writing as tools to plan for effective, scaffolded instruction
- How to position grammar concepts about print instruction across three overlapping levels of support: oral language, illustrating, and writing
- Over 200 engaging picture book recommendations to stir curious classroom conversations
Patterns of Wonder provides a simple classroom routine that is structured in length and approach, but provides teachers flexibility in choosing the texts, allowing for numerous, diverse voices in the classroom. The practice helps students build cognitive recognition and provides a formative assessment for teachers on student progress. Grounded in play, conversation, and most of all, wonder, Patterns of Wonder brings the authors’ irrepressible excitement for inquiry and writing instruction to the ways we support our Pre-K, Kindergarten and 1st grade emergent writers.
The Patterns of Power series also includes Patterns of Power: Inviting Adolescent Writers into the Conventions of Language, Grades 6-8, Patterns of Power: Inviting Young Writers into the Conventions of Language, Grades 1-5, Patterns of Power: Teaching Grammar Through Reading and Writing, Grades 9-12, and Patterns of Power en Español: Inviting Bilingual Writers into the Conventions of Spanish, Grades 1-5.
About the Author
For the past 25 years, Jeff has worked with writers and teachers of grades, K-12, inspiring them about the power and joy of the writing process. He has written four books for Stenhouse Publishers: Mechanically Inclined, Everyday Editing, 10 Things Every Writer Needs to Know and his latest book with Dr. Deborah Dean of BYU Revision Decisions: Talking Through Sentences and Beyond (November 2014). He also has two middle grade novels, Zack Delacruz: Me and My Big Mouth (Sterling, 2015) and Zack Delacruz: Just My Luck (Sterling, October 2016).
Jeff grew up in Austin, where he learned to love writing through journaling, a bit of positive reinforcement, and writing stories and dramas to entertain his friends on the phone. He wanted to become a teacher early on, but his parents tried to convince him otherwise. "They wanted me to make more money." During an internship visit to a local elementary classroom, he made up his mind. "When I saw those curious eyes, kids raising their hands, asking questions, I lost all track of time and from that moment on, I was a teacher. I want to create environments that feel safe for learners at the elementary, middle, and university levels and during professional development for teachers. Working together we figure out things, surprise each other, find our strengths, and experience the joy it is to be a learner and teacher. We are students and teachers to each other."
Jeff specializes in writing, revision, and grammar. "I love the ability to spark curiosity and creativity and to support students in finding their voices. That's pure joy." When it comes to his own professional development, he wants to explore things that have meaning to him in the classroom. "I want to find out things I didn't know, be affirmed or reminded of what I do know, and be energized by thinking and action, reflection and application. Since that's what I want, that's what I give teachers. Something they can take, shape, and make their own. Something they can use right now."
Jeff's first book Mechanically Inclined, came to life from what he didn't know and what he needed to know. "I read, tried things out, played in my head and in my classroom, and read some more, permutating and refining. I thought about what worked and what didn't, as well as what sound pedagogical principles are used in other disciplines."
His other books also came from his work in his own classrooms and those across the United States. The invitational process Everyday Editing is built around was first shared in workshops until teachers wanted another book on grammar. 10 Things was Jeff's chance to share what his experience had taught him are the essential things every writer needs to know and be able to do. In his first collaboration, Jeff and Debbie came together to tackle a sentence combining and its larger effects on revision and writing.
In his free time, Jeff walks his dogs Carl and Paisley or sits on the deck with his partner Terry. When he's not doing that he reads middle grade novels and his new addiction is nonfiction.
“Patterns of Wonder is pure gold. It is rooted in oral language, promotes play, and fosters a love of writing as it moves students through the phases of emergent writing. This book is going to transform instruction and be a resource that teachers reference daily.” —Angela Buccheri, P-5 Humanities Coordinator Wallingford Public Schools
"I am so excited for Whitney and Jeff’s book to be in the hands of early childhood educators. In Patterns of Wonder they answer the question, 'What can developmentally-appropriate and engaging grammar, punctuation, and spelling instruction look like for our youngest writers?' Built on a strong research and theoretical foundation, they provide dozens of use-tomorrow lessons that will pique students’ curiosity about our written language and ignite wonder and excitement as they learn, play, and apply what they’ve learned to their own writing. Do away with the worksheets! Whitney and Jeff’s way of inviting children to learn these concepts will engage them so your teaching sticks." — Jennifer Serravallo, author of The Reading Strategies Book and The Writing Strategies Book
“Whitney La Rocca and Jeff Anderson have created a revolutionary resource for inviting emergent writers to notice and WONDER about the conventions of language. Considering the intentionality of why and how behind an author’s choices, they inspire writers to compose powerful messages through oral language, illustrations, and words. The scaffolded lessons incorporate oral discussion, mentor texts, and play-based experiences to appropriately meet young students where they are in the phases of writing development, differentiating instruction, and moving writers forward one approximation at a time.” —Megan Marquez, M.Ed., Writing Specialist
“Patterns of Wonder is the game changer teachers have been waiting for! Whitney and Jeff keep play at the center of emergent writers’ development with practical applications that are beautifully woven together. Every teacher should add this book to their toolkit.” —Sarah Ramirez, M.Ed., Literacy Coach
“Imagine budding authors playfully celebrating the joy and possibility of written language as they share their stories. This will happen when you invite Whitney, Jeff, and their favorite picture books into your classroom. Learners at all development phases will confidently create their own written worlds while engaging in the Patterns of Wonder process. You’ll be amazed at what your young writers can do as they discover the patterns behind the wonder.” —Maria Walther, Author of The Ramped-Up Read Aloud, The Literacy Workshop, and Shake Up Shared Reading
“Patterns of Wonder is a must-have for educators eager to engage and encourage our youngest writers. The invitational process provides the perfect backdrop to cultivate an appreciation for the beauty and power of language, as students ponder not only what authors do, but how they do it, in a nurturing, playful environment that celebrates both process and product. The buzz of excitement and flurry of hands in the air is a testament to a resource that is practically perfect in every way.” —Patricia Gallery, K-5 ELA and Literacy Specialist, Smithtown Central School District, New York
“Once again, Whitney and Jeff have produced a valuable tool for teachers that has quality lessons and is easy to pick up and implement quickly!” —Evan Payne, Instructional Coach
“Patterns of Wonder speaks to my experienced kindergarten writing teacher heart! Whitney and Jeff’sPatterns of Wonder process and lessons have beautifully honored the emergent writer’s sense of wonder and their need to learn through approximation, inquiry, and play. Children are going to WANT to spend time every day putting their stories into pictures and words!” —Carolyn Helmers, Kindergarten Teacher, Cincinnati, OH and Co-author of Intentional from the Start