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Elementary Teacher Resources, Issue #033 - Fizzle Bags... for writing ideas!
April 13, 2009

Fizzle Bags

I recently discovered Author: A True Story by Helen Lester at my library.

It was love at first glance.

Someday I would like to be an author; I love writing and reading, and all things “books”… so I dove into this book with wild abandon.

It’s all about Helen’s progression as a writer. From 3 year old to published children’s book author.

I read it to my kids and they were mesmerized by an idea she had called a “Fizzle Box”.

In her box were ideas, half finished stories, quotes and anything else that was “good” but needed more work.

Well, my kids wanted their own fizzle boxes, but I didn’t have that many boxes so we made fizzle bags.

They decorated paper sacks and went to work on their ideas.

I gave them index cards to jot down anything that was floating around in their brain at the time.

Now, when they say, “I don’t know what to write about!” I can just tell them to look through their fizzle bag for an idea.


Dear First Grade Teachers,

I am interested in compiling some data on DRA levels and First Grade students.

The data I am gathering is INDEPENDENT DRA or Running Record levels the children come into First Grade on, and where they are each quarter.

I want to see if it is "statistically probable" to expect children who come in on a DRA 1-2 to be able to reach a DRA 14-16 by the end of the year on a consistent basis.

If you're willing to help me out, please fill out the form here and send it back to me.

If you know other First Grade teachers that would be willing to do this informal, anonymous study please send this newsletter to them.

Thank you for your time and energy!


Check out my podcasts on my podcast blog. They are fun and helpful!

I hope that you have enjoyed this newsletter. Please feel free to email it to friends and family who are teachers or homeschool moms!

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

See you next month!







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