With so many reluctant writers in my class I needed to start the year with an alternate writing tool. Last year, while I was working as a collaboration-relief teacher I came across a writing framework that was both logic and simple to use. The Four-Square writing framework is essentially a graphic organizer which allows students to organize their thoughts in a logical ways and present them in paragraph form.
So far this year my students have been practicing writing a five sentence paragraph. Once they master this process I will move to an 8-sentence paragraph, and finish with combining several paragraphs together.
Here is a link to a useful Powerpoint presentation using the four-square framework.