Student Writing Keepsake Books

I try not to send my students home with a lot of paper. As a mom myself, I have plenty of clutter around my house; I don't need school clutter as well! But one of my most favorite things to do in my classroom is to make my students a keepsake book of all of their published writing pieces throughout the year.
Keep your students' published writing pieces from throughout the year and bind them into a finished book. It will be a great keepsake for your kiddos to remember the year they spent with you. Blog post includes a freebie table of contents, dedication page, and about the author page.
Organization is key for this project, so I always start with creating a file folder for each of my students before school starts. I used to store all of my writing pieces by genre but I was always scrambling to assemble the books at the end of the year. Not this year!! Take a few extra minutes to organize by student and it will save you a HUGE headache in the end!
Keep your students' published writing pieces from throughout the year and bind them into a finished book. It will be a great keepsake for your kiddos to remember the year they spent with you. Blog post includes a freebie table of contents, dedication page, and about the author page.
Then, as we publish pieces throughout the year, I add them to each student's file folder in chronological order. We always have a few personal narratives, an information report they write from their own knowledge, a persuasive essay, a literary essay, a fairy tale, and my favorite is their final piece which is a persuasive letter to the next year's grade level stating why they should move onto that grade!

During the last week of school, my students and I head outside so that I can take individual photos of them standing against the brick exterior. I don't know why, but I just love photos of kids in front of a brick wall! I use the photos to make the cover of the books. My students get to choose what color card stock they want for the front and back covers. I glue their photos on the colored paper and laminate the front and back covers.

Before I bind the books, I add a table of contents, dedication, and about the author pages.
Keep your students' published writing pieces from throughout the year and bind them into a finished book. It will be a great keepsake for your kiddos to remember the year they spent with you. Blog post includes a freebie table of contents, dedication page, and about the author page.
Click HERE if you'd like a copy of these pages. 

Lastly, I use my school's comb binder to bind all their stories into books. If you don't have access to a comb binder, you can take the books to an office supply store and get them spiral bound for a few dollars a piece. Yes, it's a little pricey, but the looks on my students' faces when I give them their books is priceless! They chatter excitedly with their classmates, taking a walk down their third grade memory lane. My hope is that these books are stored in a safe place and when my students are "80 years old and all wrinkly" (those are the exact words I use!), they can have a small piece of their childhood to look back at.
Keep your students' published writing pieces from throughout the year and bind them into a finished book. It will be a great keepsake for your kiddos to remember the year they spent with you. Blog post includes a freebie table of contents, dedication page, and about the author page.

For more writing ideas, check out my Pinterest Boards!



3 comments

  1. I love this idea! I always struggle with what to do with their writing. I don't like having students do all their writing in a notebook, because I don't like holding it all til the end of the year. I did that one year and had parents question if their kids ever wrote anything. On the other hand, I like to be able to see students growth in their writing. This is a perfect blend of the 2. Some writing can go home and some can be held!

    Primary On The Prowl

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  2. I love this idea! I'm curious, do you grade the published work that you keep and send home rubrics during the year? If so, what do you send home with it?
    Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Yes I do grade the final, published pieces, but they are revised and edited by the student and their writing partners; I do not fix up their writing. I use the Lucy Calkins/TCRWP program, which includes rubrics for grading. So I photocopy the writing pieces and send the copy home with the rubrics attached. Hope that helps!

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