1st Edition

SPARK! Quick Writes to Kindle Hearts and Minds in Elementary Classrooms

By Paula Bourque Copyright 2019

    The act of writing helps shape our thinking and is an important life skill we need to nurture in even our youngest students. In her new book, Spark!: Quick Writes to Kindle Hearts and Minds in Elementary Classrooms, author Paula Bourque recommends making writing a daily habit through enjoyable quick writes - short, frequent bursts of low-stakes writing that lets young students think and play with ideas on paper.

    Bourque believes that "quantity produces quality" and suggests writing exercises that can be infused throughout the day. In just 5-10 minutes each day, Spark! can boost student confidence and transform the way they think about themselves as writers.

    • Build Skills and Stamina: By creating a daily writing habit, students can improve their writing, find their voice, and strengthen communication skills
    • Spark Creativity: Low-stakes writing can reduce anxiety in students and encourage them to take risks, play with language, develop ideas, and write creatively.
    • Packed with Prompts: Bourque includes a wide variety of quick write prompts, including visual, auditory, and verbal art that can stimulate thinking.
    • Community of Writers: During the writing process, students become exposed to and can explore diverse thoughts and ideas of others.

    Spark! offers purposeful and practical approaches that meet your students where they are in their writing development. Through volume writing, students can find their voice, build their language art skills, and gain confidence as a writer.

    1.  Why Quick Write?  2. How to Use Quick Writes  3. Emerging Quick Writes: Automaticity for Primary Writers  4. Informational Quick Writes: Knowledge, Wonder, and Opinion  5. Appreciation Quick Writes: Bringing the Arts Back to Language Arts  6. Creativity Quick Writes: Composing and Communicating  7. Social-Emotional Quick Writes: Mindfulness, Metacognition, and Mindset  8. Teacher Quick Writes: Inspiring Learning and Leading


    Paula Bourque is a National Board-Certified Teacher of literacy and a K-6 instructional coach in Augusta, Maine. She considers herself a lifelong learner and has worn many hats in her thirty-plus years in education: classroom teacher, Reading Recovery teacher, literacy specialist, consultant, adjunct instructor, presenter, and mom.