WritingFor this center, I usually have a writing prompt or type of writing that I am trying to teach. I use several sources to help me find what would benefit my students.
My district loves Tony Stead so I also use some of his stuff. Is That a Fact? provides lots of ideas for projects to do with non-fiction writing. Since Common Core is more non-fiction than what we are all used to, I started using this book last year.
My grade level recently got Crafting Nonfiction Intermediate: Lessons on Writing Process, Traits, and Craft (grades 3-5). This book is pretty pricey but well worth it if you are struggling with mini lessons like I am! I haven't tried it out with students yet, but it has a lot of tips and lessons for teaching everything you can imagine about writing. It also has a CD with printables.
Sometimes I use an activity from a book like Take It to Your Seat Writing Centers, Grades 2-3.
Whatever the lesson is, Writing is a center that I usually have to teach each time I go through our new rotation of centers. I will teach a mini-lesson on writing, such as using dialogue, and then they will complete a writing prompt that includes dialogue when they are at the Writing Center.
If they finish their assignment early they can free write in their writing journals.
GameThis is one of the easiest centers I do, and the students love it! I've been blessed to have bought these games from Lakeshore.
Third grade as a whole last year struggled with vocabulary, so I used my ESL stipend to buy these games from Lakeshore. The set has prefixes, suffixes, context clues and synonyms and antonyms. I simply explain the particular game and the students will play it. I also try to have them read the directions to figure out how to play too.
Really Good Stuff.