4 Square Writing in Kindergarten!
Well, we’ve started the New Year with full force in Kindergarten and as we kick academics up a notch, we continue to implement the 4 Square Writing technique. I learned this writing technique last year when I was teaching 2nd grade and saw how beneficial and effective it was in producing better writers. I feel that I had an advantage as I used this writing tool in my Kindergarten class in the fall because I had the 2nd grade year to direct me as to where and what direction I wanted my Kindergartners to go.
To explain this technique in a nutshell, 4 Square Writing is a way to learn to write for any grade or subject. A graphic organizer (paper divided up into 4 squares) is used to teach prewriting and organizational skills. It is a visual aid that helps students conceptualize and understand what they are writing.
There are different ways of using the 4 Square template depending on what grade the child is in. In Kindergarten, I transformed a small bulletin board into a super-sized 4 Square Template (see picture below) so that I could discuss and brainstorm with my Kindergartners before they used their own templates. We started with a topic in the middle of the template and then drew pictures in each of the 4 squares that related to our topic in the middle. We have now progressed to writing simple starter sentences using our High Frequency Words and ending them with pictures. You will see an example of this in the picture below. This is the work of one of my Kindergartners. As you can see, he has written in the sentences and completed them with a picture. They all relate to the topic “Winter.”
Eventually, the children will complete the sentences using their High Frequency Words along with inventive spelling once all phonics are learned. This system allows the students to stay on topic in an organized fashion. As the student moves through the grades, he or she will be writing paragraphs in each square which is then written over on regular lined paper in paragraph form.
Just wanted to share this with you because I am so fond of it! Feel free to post questions or comments and please look at our previous blogs!