Interactive Writing

UDL 3.3 UDL 3.4 UDL 6.2

Interactive Writing is a process in which the teacher leads the students through various writing forms (e.g. letter, persuasive essay, poems) by first modeling and having the students create the writing form as a whole class. The teacher models the elements that are needed in the writing form as the students contribute the content to the writing. In this way, the students are able to practice writing and becoming familiar with the form prior to independent practice. The teacher can also embed writing mechanics, grammar and sentence structure into the interactive writing process.

Implementation Tips

Use Posters as a Reference
With interactive writing, the teacher typically has wall-sized paper on which to compose the story, genre and writing form with the students. This writing example can be displayed throughout the unit as the students write independently.
Whiteboard Practice
During the interactive writing process, students could use mini-whiteboards to practice writing alongside the teacher (e.g. brainstorming, writing sentences, adding words - synonyms/antonyms, etc).
Additional Support
For students who need more support with the writing process, have graphic organizers, sentence / paragraph frames or writing outlines available as an additional adaptation to the interactive writing process.


Science – 5th grade ELL
Students are learning about living organisms. As part of the unit, the teacher has asked the students to complete a research project on a living organism. Through interactive writing, the teacher models the how to write the report as she guides all students through the organizational process and format of the report.
History – 8th grade
During a history unit on the U.S. Civil War, the teacher models how to write a persuasive essay about the U.S Civil War. Through the interactive writing process the teacher outlines how to present an argument (introductory paragraph - thesis statement), provide supporting paragraphs (each with one point), and summarize in the concluding paragraph. As the teacher is modeling the persuasive essay, the students are actively providing details, creating the paragraphs together and solidifying the persuasive writing process.
English – 3rd Grade Poetry
In class, students are learning to write a seasonal haiku. Through interactive writing, the teacher leads the students through a brainstorming activity around words and introduces the form of haiku. The students compose a haiku together as a whole group and then break into groups of two to write a haiku with a partner. The students then compile the haikus into a seasonal illustrated class book.

Related Strategies