I began the school year by reading Ralph Fletcher's A Writer's Notebook aloud to my fourth grade class. This book details how writers get ideas through keeping a notebook-- a place to record and respond to events we observe in the world. We have set up our own writer's notebooks and add to them each day after reading a chapter of Fletcher's book. This is the first year my students are actually excited about writing! One of the biggest hang-ups for my young writers is thinking of ideas about which to write. Fletcher's book provides many "seed ideas" to get my students' brains churning. Now, even my less motivated students look forward to writing time each day. I even have students ASKING to take their writer's notebooks home to work on during their own time! Fletcher's book is a great motivator for young writers. Its ideas are practical and easily applicable to the classroom. I recommend it to any young writers, ages 8 and up!