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Expository Writing

September 26, 2014

The changing seasons provide a great opportunity to teach integrated science, reading, and writing  lessons.
Students can begin by taking an Observation Walk around the school and record signs of seasonal changes into their science notebook.
They can read fiction and non-fiction books about the seasons. A suggested book list is provided.
Students can use web 2 tools to research and make products concerning the seasons.
They can also use different apps to organize and present a product.
I always recommend educreations, popplet, and tools4students.

This post includes the following:
Expository Narrative Expository Narrative LP (recommended book list, objectives, procedures)

seasons graphic organizer

Expository writing prompt, lined paper, and rubric ( based on STAAR)

Personal Narrative: A Special Moment

September 24, 2014

hundredpenny The Hundred Penny Box by Sharon Bell Mathis is an excellent book to use when teaching students about memories and special moments. Aunt Dew has a box filled with pennies that represent the special moments of her life.
Sometimes, students have difficulty taking a big topic down to a small topic. They tend to ramble about the many facets of the big topic instead of focusing on developing a narrative about one small topic.

Lesson plans are provided for writing a personal narrative about a special moment.
A Funneling Power Point, explaining how to funnel a big topic to a small topic is also provided.
I have also included  a graphic organizer and an example of a personal narrative on a special moment.
Special Moment writing prompt, rubric, and lined paper are also provided.

These activities may be updated by using technology such as:
Educreations ( Take a photo of the student’s finished narrative and a photo of their memento. Have the student record themselves reading their narrative.
QR Code Generator The student writings and photos can be posted on the bulletin board with a QR code for people to hear the students reading their own writing. Students are very proud of this interactive bulletin board.
Tools4Students (graphic organizers)

Visualizing Strategy:Reading Comprehension and Developing a First Draft

September 11, 2014

Aligned TEKS

K.10(A) identify the topic and details in expository text heard or read, referring to the words and/or illustrations;

1.14(A) restate the main idea, heard or read;

2.14(A) identify the main idea in a text and distinguish it from the topic;

3.13(A) identify the details or facts that support the main idea;

4.11(A) summarize the main idea and supporting details in text in ways that maintain meaning;

5.11(A) summarize the main ideas and supporting details in a text in ways that maintain meaning and logical order;

Visual learners may benefit from viewing and discussing folk art.
Students can view a colorful, detailed folk art piece and identify the topic and details of the piece.
They can be asked to restate the main idea they visualize.
Students can then be asked to identify details or facts that support the main idea.
Students can use a graphic organizer to write a sentence that summarizes the main idea.  Then they can add the detail sentences.
After visual learners have practice identifying the topic, main idea, and details of a piece of folk art, they will be able to transition into using these skills to comprehend a passage that is read.
Use this Power Point for discussion.
After spending time with different pieces of art, students can then be asked to draw their own piece of folk art.
Remind students to think of the theme, the main idea, and the details of their folk art.
Students will then write the story depicted in their folk art.
Use this Power Point for discussion and whole group writing.
After the class has written a story together, they can then be directed to draw their own picture and write the story.

Aligned Writing TEKS
K.13(B) develop drafts by sequencing the action or details in the story (with adult assistance);

1.17(B) develop drafts by sequencing ideas through writing sentences;

2.17(B) develop drafts by sequencing ideas through writing sentences;

3.17(B) develop drafts by categorizing ideas and organizing them into paragraphs;

4.15(B) develop drafts by categorizing ideas and organizing them into paragraphs;

5.15(B) develop drafts by choosing an appropriate organizational strategy (e.g., sequence of events, cause-effect, compare-contrast) and building on ideas to create a focused, organized, and coherent piece of writing;

Writing a Personal Narrative: Kevin Henkes Touchstone Books

September 4, 2014

Reading Unit: Becoming an Active Reader
Focus: Activate & Connect
SE: Fig. 19 (F) make connections (e.g., thematic links, author analysis) between literary and informational texts with similar ideas and provide textual evidence

Writing Mode: Personal Narrative Writing Process: Prewriting, Editing
SE: 3.17 (B) develop drafts by categorizing ideas and organizing them into paragraphs
3.17 (D) edit drafts for grammar, mechanics, and spelling using a teacher-developed rubric

Kevin Henkes is an award winning author. Students easily connect to his characters and message.
Click on Lesson Plans for plans that include writing prompts, and integrated reading and writing activities.
There are many graphic organizing apps and web resources that could increase student engagement and success.

Reading Poetry: The Swing by Robert Lewis Stevenson

September 2, 2014

Readiness Standard 3.8 Students understand, make inferences and draw conclusions about the structure and elements of fiction and provide evidence from text to support their understanding.

Supportive Standard 3.6 Students understand, make inferences and draw conclusions about the structure and elements of poetry and provide evidence from text to support their understanding. Students are expected to describe the characteristics of various forms of poetry and how they create imagery (e.g., narrative poetry, lyrical poetry, humorous poetry, free verse).

The Swing This is a Power Point that includes the poem and questions based on the TEK/STAAR  format.
I suggest that the poem be read aloud each day.
Students can illustrate what the poem helps them to visualize.
Students can use the Think-Pair-Share cooperative learning strategy to ask relevant questions and discuss what they think about the poem.
Students can practice fluency by reading the poem to each other.
The teacher can discuss the elements of poetry used by the poet.

Project Based Activities for Reading and Writing: Love That Dog

September 2, 2014

Love That Dog by Sharon Creech
love that dog
Students can be grouped to choose from a list of differentiated reading and writing activities based on the ideas from Love That Dog.

Students can practice reading non-fiction articles from Time for Kids.
If you have access to Brainpop jr., you can view the video about taking care of pets. The site offers various online activities on the topic of taking care of pets.
Brainpop jr. also has a video and activities on the topic of poetry.
Students can also use World Book Online to research topics related to the book, such as dogs, pets, tigers, poetry, or the poets read about in the book.
Read Write Think offers activities for writing  online acrostic poems and  online shape poems.

Tools 4 Students is an app that offers organizer templates.

Events Organizer                   Chapter                                What I Learned Today (research organizer)

Events Chapter NotesWhat I Learned Today

Problem Solution Organizer                Character, Setting, Plot

Problem Solution Organizer         Character, Setting, Plot

Reading and Writing Poetry

September 2, 2014


love that dog Love That Dog by Sharon Creech
This is an excellent book to read in an integrated reading and writing unit.
The lessons that I am providing are based on the aligned ELA TEKs for K-5.
The standards and TEKS are cumulative. The lessons can be adapted to meet differentiated and grade level needs.
Aligned ELA TEKS poetry This is an overview of the aligned TEKS for reading and writing poetry from K-5. It can be used as a resource in planning.
The Red Wheelbarrow by William Carlos William This is one of the poems that Sharon Creech includes in Love That Dog. Lesson plans are provided, along with samples of using apps such as popplet and sticky.
stickypoem Using the Sticky app to publish   verbwagon Using the popplet app to make a verb graphic

The Red WheelBarrow This is a Power Point that includes the poem and has TEKs and STAAR based questions. (3rd grade) This Power Point can be converted to Smart Board and used interactively.
The Apple This is a pdf of a concrete poem included in Love That Dog. It is written by  S.C. Riggs, the pseudonym of Sharon Creech. K-4 can write a basic concrete poem using words that provide imagery. Fifth graders can add onomatopoeia. Students can create these shaped poems on paper, or they can use tagxedo, a word cloud tool.
The Apple Power Point This is a Power Point that includes discussion questions.

Love That Boy This is a poem by Walter Dean Myers. It is the poem that inspires Jack to write about his dog. The Power Point includes questions based on TEKS and STAAR format.

Educreations is a web tool that allows students to publish and record.
They can insert photos or illustrate their topics.
After recording and publishing, students can take a photo of their educreations poem.
Then they can use the QR Code Generator to post their poetry on the bulletin board for the public to hear them read their poem.

I found this PDF lesson plan for Love That Dog  literature circles activities and questions.

Source of PDF:









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