Student Writing: Drafting, Revising, and Editing

Composing the First Draft

Students write their first drafts after they have planned what to write. They form sentences and paragraphs about the ideas they generated and organized in the pre-writing activities.

Students work independently while the teacher observes and offers help as needed.


Once the first draft is finished, students need to revise their work. This is where they focus on whether or not the content of their writing makes sense. “It means removing a perfectly good sentence because it doesn’t belong, adding details or clarification, tightening our language”. Here is an excellent article on revising: Teaching Revision.


In the editing phase, students are checking for spelling, grammar, capitalization, and punctuation mistakes. Read over Teaching Editing for some teaching strategies.

More Writing Resources:

Think Quest

West Virginia Department of Education

The ABCs of the Writing Process


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