Write to Learns (WTL) are short writing exercises intended to help students collect their thoughts, start a discussion, or reflect on an assignment. As with most activities, consider your goals when planning a WTL. What do you want students to most gain from the WTL? Your questions or prompts should clearly reflect this. If the goal is to have students evaluate a text, ask them to analyze the effectiveness of something rather than react to the main ideas. If the goal is to engage students' ideas and evaluate a text, plan questions that address both goals. Have students react to ideas first, then ask them to evaluate the author's use of evidence to support these ideas.
Think about how a WTL fits into your lesson. How does it connect with other activities? How might you use it to focus students' thoughts for a discussion or another activity? You can put WTL prompts on the board, display them on an overhead projector, or post them on your class Web site.When to use Write to Learns