For decades, Montpelier’s Gary Miller wrote English Language Arts curriculum for some of the largest (and smallest) publishers in the world. But when it came to teaching writing, he also had some ideas of his own. Those ideas have found their way into Miller’s new book There’s No Way to Do It Wrong! How to Get Young Learners to Take Risks, Tell Stories, Share Opinions, and Fall in Love with Writing, now available at 7minutewriter.com.
Coming in at just under 60 pages, this slender how-to targets teachers and home schoolers who want their grade 5-8 students to overcome their fear, write with confidence, and love the writing process. The book, says Miller, is designed to convince young learners that writing can be fun — and that they all can be successful writers and authors.
“We’ve become so focused on standards and testing. We forget that kids learn to love writing by having fun,” Miller says. “When we focus instead on brief, low-risk writing prompts and what students are doing right, we can turn reluctant writers into enthusiastic, motivated ones.”
There’s No Way to Do It Wrong! uses 7-minute writing sessions and positive feedback as a springboard to get the ink flowing and build confidence. The process builds skills for all types of writing, from descriptive and persuasive writing to narrative and expository. And the book also includes ideas for publishing student work and 101 bonus prompts designed to spark young writers’ creativity.
There’s No Way to Do It Wrong! Is available at 7minutewriter.com, on Amazon, and in Central Vermont at Bear Pond Books in Montpelier. Gary is available to lead Zoom workshops on the 7-Minute Method for teachers, homeschoolers, and young learners. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gary Miller is a writer, editor and writing workshop leader living in Montpelier. He is cofounder and creative director of Writers for Recovery, and the author of Museum of the Americas, which was nominated for the Vermont Book Award.