Developing Artistic Writing ... with Engaging Literature Mentor Texts Tone/Mood
Word Play Figurative Language
Brevard Public Schools Elementary Edition 2010-2011
SCHOOL BOARD OF BREVARD COUNTY Educational Services Facility 2700 Judge Fran Jamieson Way Viera, Florida 32940-6601 Amy Kneessy, Chairman Dr. Barbara A. Murray, Vice Chairman Karen Henderson Robert Jordan Andrew Ziegler SUPERINTENDENT Dr. Brian T. Binggeli
NONDISCRIMINATION NOTICE It is the policy of the School Board of Brevard County to offer the opportunity to all students to participate in appropriate programs and activities without regard to race, color, gender, religion, national origin, disability, marital status, or age, except as otherwise provided by Federal law or by Florida state law. A student having a grievance concerning discrimination may contact: Dr. Brian T. Binggeli Superintendent Brevard Public Schools
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Dr. Walter Christy, Director Office of Secondary Programs
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Developing Artistic Writing …with Engaging Literature Overview Developing Artistic Writing …With Engaging Literature was created to supply teachers in grades 3-6 with lessons that teach literary techniques using mentor texts. Mentor texts, literature that provides examples of good writing, are ideal ways to introduce a lesson. Consider the addition of literary techniques in writing as the “seasonings” that add interest and for that reason should be added sparingly. In addition to these 43 lessons, there is a section called Games and Gimmicks, a fun way to engage the writer. The accompanying mentor text list is a total collection of all the literature mentioned in the lesson plans. Lastly, as a nod to B.E.S.T. the lessons were designed into four quadrants: Anticipatory Set (HOOK), Modeling, Guided Practice, and Independent Practice/Sharing (PERFORMANCE).
Acknowledgements Creators/Contributors •
Jill Grimm, Sunrise Elementary
Patti Henning, Longleaf Elementary
Brandy Kilcommons, Harbor City Elementary
Lainey Newell, Columbia Elementary
Denise Peters, Croton Elementary
Theresa Phelps, Project Coordinator, Brevard County Elementary Writing Resource Teacher
Table of Contents Page Number
Figurative Language Hyperboles/Mentor Text…………………………………………………………… • • •
Taking Out the Trash……………………………………………………….. You Should Have Seen the One that Got Away …………………………… Hyperbole Worksheet ………………………………………………………
2 3 4
Crazy Sayings………………………………………………………………. Don’t Take Us Literally, We’re Just a Bunch of Idioms…………………...
• • •
I am a Walking Thesaurus …………………………………………………. Simile/Metaphor Worksheet ……………………………………………….. Making Comparisons………………………………………………………..
9 10 11
Human Qualities……………………………………………………………. My Writing Dances Across the Paper………………………………………
Dare to Compare…………………………………………………………… Sweet Similes……………………………………………………………….
Organization Effective Conclusions/Mentor Text………………………………………………… • •
M.E.A.L. Conclusions Leave Your Reader Full, Fat, and Happy! ………... Circular Conclusions Tie It Up! ……………………………………………
Hooks-Make ‘Em Great……………………………………………………. Hooks with Sounds and Voices……………………………………………..
Transitional Phrases/Mentor Text…………………………………………………..
We Like to Move It, Move It, Move It…………………………………….. Move Along…………………………………………………………………
Table of Contents Page Number
Tone/Mood Ellipses/Mentor Text……………………………………………………………….. • •
Wait For It …………………………………………………………………. Add Drama …………………………………………………………………
Emotion Words/Mentor Texts………………………………………………….......
Physical Cues……………………………………………………………….. Mood Swings ………………………………………………………………
A Memory Slice…………………………………………………………….. Turn Back Time……………………………………………………………..
• • •
Things to Come……………………………………………………………... Super Sleuthing ……………………………………………………………. Foreshadowing Chart……………………………………………………….
38 39 40
Sensory Words/Mentor Text………………………………………………………..
A Room with a View……………………………………………………….. A Thrilling Ride…………………………………………………………….
I Can’t Stop Thinking! ..…………..…………………………………………. Adding Character to Your Writing …………………………………………
Word Choice Dazzling Color Words/Mentor Text………………………………………………... • •
Color Your World…………………………………………………………... The World is a Rainbow…………………………………………………….
Mature Words/Mentor Text………………………………………………………...
A Mature Sense of Style……………………………………………………. You Have a Way with Words………………………………………………
Specific Nouns……………………………………………………………... A Proper Paper……………………………………………………………...
Table of Contents Page Number Vivid Verbs/Mentor Text………………………………………………………….. • •
Strength Training…………………………………………………………... Building Stronger Writing with Verbs……………………………………..
56 57 58
Word Play • • •
Alliteration/Mentor Text…………………………………………………… Come on Alliterations!.................................................................................... Tongue Twisters…………………………………………………………….
ALL CAPS, Onomatopoeia, Stretching Words/Mentor Text……………................ • • • •
Screech-h-h-h Word Play ………………………………………………….. I’ve Got That … Boom, Boom, Pow…………………………………….. Sandcastle Writing………………………………………………………….. Sandcastle Letter……………………………………………………………
Nifty Names/Mentor Text………………………………………………………….. • •
Nifty Names: Dr. Cure……………………………………………………… What’s in a Name? Using Personality Traits for Nifty Names……………..
59 60 61 62 63 64-65 66-67 68 69 70 71
Target Skills Chart ……………………………………………………………
Games and Gimmicks ………………………………………………………..
Mentor Text Lists …….. ………………………………………………
Hyperboles Definition: Over-exaggeration Mentor Text: John Henry by Julius Lester He grew and grew and grew until his head and shoulders busted through the roof which was over the porch. He swung one of his hammers round and round his head. It made such a wind that leaves blew off the trees and birds fell out of the sky. Paul Bunyan by Brian Gleeson He was cominâ€™ through the woods, his eye level with the treetops, pushinâ€™ pines out of his way like they was cornstalks. And there he stood, large as a mountain.
Pecos Bill adapted by Brian Gleeson Up in the hills, he bumped into a cougar that was two tons bigger than any horse and he knew he was two tons bigger than any horse.
Other Mentor Texts: Judy and the Volcano by Wayne Harris The Secret Knowledge of Grownups by David Wisniewski Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
Taking out the Trash! Objective: Students will identify hyperboles in context and implement hyperboles into their writing to enable readers to visualize an event or experience. Anticipatory Set: Explain that a hyperbole is using an intentional over-exaggeration to emphasize a point or idea and should not be taken literally. Display examples of hyperboles and discuss the figurative and literal meanings. Use the mentor text to identify hyperboles. Modeling: Display the following sentences on chart paper or the document camera: His feet are big. My eyes opened wide at the sight of the ice cream cones that we were having for dessert. My backpack is heavy. Model how ordinary, plain sentences can be turned into extreme exaggerations or hyperboles. His feet are the size of a barge. My eyes widened at the sight of the mile-high ice cream cones that we were having for dessert. My backpack weighs a ton! Discuss the literal and figurative meanings of each hyperbole. Guided Practice: Read and display the poem Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out from Shel Silversteinâ€™s book Where the Sidewalk Ends, then pass out a copy of the poem to each student. The poem can be found at the following website: (http://mste.illinois.edu/courses/ci407su01/students/north/kristy/Project/K-Poem-Net.html) Identify and highlight three examples of hyperboles in the poem. It piled up to the ceiling. It covered the floor. It blocked the door. Independent Practice: The students will highlight the remainder of the hyperboles in the poem. It went down the hall. It raised the roof. At last the garbage reached so high, finally it touched the sky. All the neighbors moved away. None of her friends would come out. The garbage reached across the state. The students write a hyperbole, give it to a classmate, and the classmate illustrates the figurative and literal meanings. The student receiving the hyperbole also writes the literal meaning in a complete sentence.
You Should Have Seen the One That Got Away… Objective: Students will identify hyperboles in context and implement hyperboles into their writing to enable readers to visualize an event or experience. Anticipatory Set: Explain to the class that a hyperbole is using over exaggeration to emphasize a point or idea. Relay examples of exaggeration and have students share times when they have either exaggerated a detail or heard someone use exaggeration to make a point. For example, a student might say, “We had a ton of math homework last night.” Your mother might say, “I told you a million times to clean your room!” After brainstorming and discussing ideas, discuss the literal meaning of hyperbole and why someone might use a hyperbole to emphasize a specific point. Modeling: Read the book John Henry by Julius Lester, displaying the book on the document camera. While “thinking aloud,” identify hyperboles used throughout the entire story. Hold a class discussion to identify hyperboles and explain the literal meaning. He grew and grew and grew until his head and shoulders busted through the roof which was over the porch. He swung one of his hammers round and round his head. It made such a wind that leaves blew off the trees and birds fell out of the sky. Guided Practice: Several mentor texts will be available for the students. As students are reading through the books, they will identify hyperboles. The students will work in small groups to record the hyperboles. Beside each listed hyperbole, the students will write the literal meaning of the hyperbole. Finally, the students will draw a picture to demonstrate the hyperbole. Independent Practice: The students will receive a worksheet that has 10 hyperboles. The students will underline the hyperbole in each sentence and write what it means underneath (see worksheet on following page). Publishing/Sharing: The students may share the hyperboles they found and the illustrations they drew.
Hyperbole A hyperbole is a type of figurative language that uses exaggeration to make writing more interesting. In the following sentences, underline the hyperbole and write the literal meaning underneath. 1. He was so big, he used a tree trunk as a toothpick.
2. The town is so small, you had better not blink or you will miss seeing it.
3. I have told you a million times today to clean your room.
4. I was so hungry, I could eat a horse.
5. The boy ran so slow in the race that a turtle could have beaten him.
6. The teacher is so busy we have to make appointments three weeks in advance to ask a question.
7. I am so tired I could sleep for a thousand years.
8. I can run so fast that a Lamborghini canâ€™t even keep up with me.
9. My mother is so tall that she looks down at the giraffes at the zoo.
10. Her shoes are so big they look like canoes.
Idioms Definition: An expression that has a meaning different from the meaning of its individual words. For example, “hit the road” is an idiom meaning “to leave quickly.” Mentor Text: Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish “Draw the drapes? That’s what it says. I’m not much of a hand at drawing, but I’ll try.” So Amelia Bedelia sat right down and she drew those drapes. Who Let the Cat Out of the Bag? by Fourth Grade Students of Newcastle Avenue Elementary Don’t spill the beans. Meaning: Don’t tell the secret. You’re barking up the wrong tree. Meaning: Whatever you’re looking for, you won’t find it here. More Parts by Tedd Arnold One day I tripped on my red truck and it just fell apart. But when I told my mom, she said, “I’ll bet that broke your heart.”
Other Mentor Texts: A Chocolate Moose for Dinner by Fred Gwynne Dog Breath by Dav Pilkey In a Pickle: And Other Funny Idioms by Marvin Terban Mad as a Wet Hen: And Other Idioms by Marvin Terban Punching the Clock: Funny Action Idioms by Marvin Terban
Crazy Sayings Objective: Students will identify an idiom and draw a literal illustration to match and an illustration that shows the intent of the idiom. Anticipatory Set: Read Amelia Bedelia pointing out the idioms throughout the book. Discuss and record idioms from the book and idioms that the students have heard. That caught my eye.
It’s raining cats and dogs.
He was under the weather.
Does the cat have your tongue? This car can turn on a dime. My feet are on fire! Don’t beat around the bush. We’re down to the wire. They are dropping like flies. That’s the icing on the cake.
It’s a small world.
He knows the ropes.
Make no bones about it. He’s on the fence. Don’t pig out. This is a piece of cake. See www.idiomsite.com for more examples
Modeling: Fold a piece of paper lengthwise (hot dog) and write “Get the lead out,” across the top of the paper explaining that this idiom means to hurry and get going. Draw a picture on the left column that literally shows a character picking up a piece of lead and hauling it away, then on the right side of the paper, draw a picture of someone hurrying. Across the bottom write the explanation of the idiom, “to hurry and get going.” In this way the students see the literal and figurative interpretation of the idiom. Guided Practice: Students select another idiom. Follow the same steps as above, except this time the students weigh in on what to draw on each side. With student input, draw the illustration described (both the literal and figurative meaning of the idiom). Independent Practice: Students select an idiom for themselves. This can be assigned by the teacher, decided by the student, or drawn at random. Working independently, the students create their own page, folding the paper in half, illustrating each side, writing the idiom across the top, and writing the explanation of the idiom across the bottom. Publishing/Sharing: Students collate their pages into a class book on idioms.
Don’t Take Us Literally; We’re Just a Bunch of Idioms Objective: Students will identify an idiom in a passage and determine the literal and figurative meaning. Anticipatory Set: Come to class wearing a homemade costume that represents the figurative meaning of the idiom “You’re driving me up a wall.” The costume could be as simple as a large sheet of construction paper with yarn ties. On the top of the piece of construction paper the teacher would write, “You’re driving me up a wall.” This slogan would be accompanied by a drawing of a car driving up a brick wall. The drawing would be centered in the middle of the large construction paper. The literal meaning would be written across the bottom (You are annoying me.). If desired, play the song, “She Drives Me Crazy” by Fine Young Cannibals while parading around the room in the costume. Modeling: Read any of the mentor texts mentioned on the previous lesson page. Identify idioms throughout the book and explain the figurative and literal meaning of the idiom. Guided Practice: Have mentor texts available for the students to peruse. Also provide many examples of idioms from the internet. (www.idiomsite.com) The students work in small groups or pairs to write the idiom on the top of the page, draw a picture depicting the figurative meaning of the idiom in the middle of the page, and write the literal meaning of the idiom underneath. Students cross the idioms off the list once they have been used. No idioms may be used more than once. Independent Practice: The students choose one idiom from the list that has not already been chosen. Provide students with a large sheet of poster board or construction paper, props, crayons, glue, etc. Students create a costume that follows the same pattern from the guided practice activity. (Idiom on top of page, picture or drawing depicting the figurative meaning of the word in the middle, literal meaning across the bottom.) Publishing/Sharing: The students parade around the school or in various classrooms modeling their costumes. The students also use technology to display their costumes (i.e.digital photo story). This is a great activity for Halloween.
Metaphors Definition: Compare two unlike things that share similar traits, but WITHOUT the words like or as Mentor Text: Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg They had reached their goal. From the top of the wall they looked below to a sea of crystals (sugar). One by one the ants climbed down into the sparkling treasure. The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter Waving her arms in the air, she was a windmill of worry. Owl Moon by Jane Yolen He looked up, as if searching the stars, as if reading a map up there. The moon made his face into a silver mask. But I was a shadow as we walked home.
Other Mentor Texts:
Under the Quilt of Night by Deborah Hopkinson and James E. Ransome Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold
I am a Walking Thesaurus! Objective: Students will identify metaphors within a passage or sentence.
Anticipatory Set: Write a list of metaphors and similes on the board. Review the difference between similes and metaphors. Similes are a comparison of two things using “like” or “as”. Metaphors are a comparison of two things without using “like” or ‘as.” Simile- He was as nervous as a marshmallow at a bonfire. His heart was beating like a bass drum. Metaphor- Her hair was silk. He is a couch potato.
Modeling: Share some of the metaphors from the mentor texts. Discuss which two items are being compared in the metaphor. Emphasize that the comparison does not contain “like” or “as” to reinforce the difference between similes and metaphors.
Guided Practice: Provide each student with a worksheet that contains similes and metaphors (see attached worksheet). As a class read through each of the sentences and determine whether each sentence contains a simile or a metaphor. Have students write SIMILE if the sentence contains a simile and METAPHOR if the sentence contains a metaphor. Students circle the words being compared in the sentence. Students write the meaning of the simile or metaphor underneath each sentence.
Independent Practice: Provide students with a different Identifying Similes and Metaphors worksheet. Students work independently to complete the same steps they did together during Guided Practice.
Publishing/Sharing: Students share specific metaphors and similes they plan on using in their personal writing.
Identifying the Words and Meanings of Similes and Metaphors (Guided Practice) 1. America is a melting pot. 2. Sarah sprinted through the forest as fast as the wind. 3. Juan trudged through the mud as slow as a turtle. 4. He is a walking encyclopedia. 5. No one wants to be in Mrs. Monotonousâ€™ class because she is a wet blanket. 6. My name is Mud ever since I disobeyed my mother. 7. After the dismissal bell rings, I feel as free as a bird. 8. I was as sick as a dog when I had the flu last weekend. 9. The ribbon of highway stretched for miles. 10. I knew I was going to sleep like a baby after running the marathon.
Identifying the Words and Meanings of Similes and Metaphors (Independent Practice)
1. Ms. Gracious is as sweet as honey because she lets us eat in the classroom every Friday. 2. The parachute fabric was as light as a feather and easy to pack for the trip. 3. I always ask you for directions because you are a walking roadmap. 4. The pillow was a fluffy cloud as it sank beneath my head. 5. Sebastian, my miniature beagle, was a slippery fish during his sudsy bath. 6. I finished my assignment as quick as a wink. 7. My brotherâ€™s car rumbled like thunder as it rolled down the street. 8. The little baby wailed like a banshee when she dropped her blanket. 9. Jacob was as hilarious as a circus-performing clown. 10. Trembling, Ava turned as white as a ghost.
Making Comparisons Objective: Students will demonstrate an understanding of metaphors by creating an original metaphor poem. Anticipatory Set: Review metaphors. Be sure students know the difference between a simile and a metaphor. Discuss how to recognize metaphors. Read aloud passages containing metaphors from mentor texts. Modeling: Show examples of metaphors used in advertising or poems.
"Life is a journey, travel it well." (United Airlines)
Ask the students to think about other things one could compare to life.
"Life's a journey. Enjoy the Ride.” (Nissan)
Guided Practice: Write, “My family is …” on the “Life’s a journey – travel light.” chalkboard and have students come up with possible (Hugo Boss Perfume) comparisons. List the ideas on the board. Among those developed choose one. For example, “My family is a day at the beach.” Then list those things which could be considered as shared elements of both. For example, both have calm and turbulent days, can be rocky, active, loud, peaceful, messy, cluttered, clear, etc. Break students up into small groups and have them select one of the “My Family is…” comparisons from the master list, or come up with one on their own. Then, have them brainstorm shared elements for both. Independent Practice: Students take their lists and create a metaphor poem. See the example below.
My Family My family is the bathroom cupboard. Dad is the band aid, strong and powerful, making boo-boos feel better. Mom is the tweezers that pick and pinch, but eventually free us from our problem. My little sister is the thermometer that sometimes makes my blood boil. Fluffy, our cat, is the round cotton ball, that gently drops to the ground from any given perch. I am the wood and glue that holds us all together … with my love.
Publishing/Sharing: Have students read their poems to the class or in their small groups.
Personification Definition: Figure of speech in which inanimate objects are given human qualities or described in human form. Mentor Text: My Olâ€™ Man by Patricia Polacco Dad had written about that old rock and the strange and mysterious lines on it and how we felt its magic. My heart sang just to think about him rollinâ€™ all over the Midwest in that old cruiser with the sunlight gleaming on his bumper. I Love You the Purplest by Barbara M. Joosse The three fished until stars sprinkled the sky and water turned dark as night.
Bat Loves the Night by Nicola Davis Outside, the birds are singing. The flowers turn their faces to the sun But inside the roof hole, the darkness stays.
Owl Moon by Jane Yolen Pa raised his face to call out again, but before he could open his mouth an echo came threading its way through the trees.
The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses by Paul Goble Angry clouds began to roll out across the sky with lightning flashing in the darkness beneath.
Other Mentor Texts: John Henry by Julius Lester The Happiness Tree by Andrea Gosline Swans by Betsy Byars Night Noises by Mem Fox
Human Qualities Objective: Students will change simple sentences to sentences with personification.
Anticipatory Set: Read the samples from the mentor texts and discuss the definition of personification.
Modeling: Write a simple sentence on the board: The classroom door (closed). Replace the word closed with The classroom door screamed shut, explaining that screamed shut gives the door human qualities, hence more descriptive.
Guided Practice: Write the sentence: The puppy barked when I went to school. With students brainstorm several possibilities. The following example is one such possibility: The puppy complained loudly when I left for school.
Independent Practice: Working in pairs, the students are assigned (or choose) one of the following sentences, converting the word in parenthesis to words that would describe a humanâ€™s actions. 1. The leaf (fell) from the tree. 2. The flashlight (went on). 3. Hair (is) on my head. 4. The CD player (made a noise). 5. The net (moves) when the basketball goes through. 6. The player piano keys (moved up and down). 7. The space shuttle (took off). 8. The little arrow (moves) across the computer screen
Publishing/Sharing: Students share their completed sentences and post them as examples on a personification chart in room.
My Writing Dances Across the Paper Objective: Students will incorporate personification in a Haiku poem. Anticipatory Set: Explain the meaning of personification (giving inanimate objects human traits). Share several examples of Haiku poems and directions on how to create one. "Haiku" is a traditional form of Japanese poetry. Haiku poems consist of 3 lines. The first and last lines of a Haiku have 5 syllables and the middle line has 7 syllables. The lines rarely rhyme.
Modeling: Write several personification sentences on the board. (These sentences or phrases may be taken from the listed mentor texts.) Identify the personification in the sentences or phrases and explain the literal meaning. Next, create a simple Haiku poem explaining the requirements and adding personification. See example below:
Daffodils dancing Gracefully in the cool breeze Reaching to the sky.
Guided Practice: Create a simple Haiku poem including personification with student input. Students check the completed Haiku for the 5-7-5 syllable format. Independent Practice: Students create a Haiku poem that includes personification. Students create an illustration to accompany their Haiku poems. Publishing/Sharing: Students share their poems with the class. bulletin board.
Display the poems on the
Similes Definition: Compares two unlike things that share a common trait and uses the words “like” or “as.”
Mentor Text: Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by Roni Schotter She tried to think of a new way to describe the look of Mr. Morley’s mousse- smooth and dark as midnight. The door to the building slammed and a gust of wind sent dead leaves soaring and dipping like crazy kites. All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan …where trout flashed like jewels in the sunlight. Leather harnesses hang like paintings against old wood; and hay dust floats like gold in the air. Amber on the Mountain by Tony Johnson Amber lived on a mountain so high, it poked through the clouds like a needle stuck in down. Trees bristled on it like porcupine quills. John Henry by Julius Lester His voice sounded like bat wings on tombstones. This was no ordinary boulder. It was as hard as anger and so big around…
Other Mentor Texts: Animalia by Graeme Base What Pete Ate from A-Z by Maira Kalman
Dare to Compare!
Objective: Students will identify similes within a text and incorporate similes into their personal writing samples. This lesson may be broken up into two writing sessions. Day 1 Anticipatory Set: Define similes (a comparison using “like” or “as”). Model several examples of similes. Read the book, Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by Roni Schotter. Students will listen for similes in the story. She tried to think of a new way to describe the look of Mr. Morley’s mousse- smooth and dark as midnight. The door to the building slammed and a gust of wind sent dead leaves soaring and dipping like crazy kites.
Modeling: After identifying and discussing the similes in the book, note additional places to insert other similes to enhance the story. Modeling and thinking aloud go through the pages and help the students locate phrases that can be made into similes. For example, Out the door of Eva’s building came Mr. Sims, the actor, carrying his enormous cat, Oliver. Pause after reading this sentence and have students create a simile from the above sentence. For example, “Oliver the cat was as bulky as a large box.” Guided Practice: Continuing through the book, students find additional places where similes could be added to enhance the text. While guiding students, be cognizant of the students’ grasp of a simile fitting the text. For example, students would not want to say, “She danced like a graceful dancer” (redundant), or “She danced like a newborn fawn” (if she were not clumsy). “She danced like a graceful swan” would be more appropriate.
Day 2: Independent Practice: Cut a 4x6 piece of white construction paper for each student. On one paper, write a simile at the top. Link this to what could happen on 90th Street, or choose from a list of similes. Students create an illustration to reflect the connotation of the simile. The objective is for the student to be able to understand that the simile is not the literal meaning. For example, with the simile angry as a wet cat, the student would not draw a wet cat. Instead, the student might draw the pizza guy from the story as he was falling off of his bike.
Publishing/Sharing: Students share their final pieces with the class. Make a class quilt combining all of the studentsâ€™ finished products.
Sweet Similes Objective: The students will identify similes within a text and accurately incorporate similes into their personal writing samples. Anticipatory Set: Define simile (comparison using “like” or “as”). Model several examples of similes. Read the book, All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan. Direct students to listen for similes in the story.
…where trout flashed like jewels in the sunlight. Leather harnesses hang like paintings against old wood; and hay dust floats like gold in the air.
Modeling: Read the book a second time and write a list of the similes from the book, creating a bank of similes from the story. Guided Practice: Pass out one Hershey Kiss to each student. On the board or chart paper write the five senses: see, feel, smell, hear, taste. Direct the students to look at the Kiss and brainstorm similes for description (for example, “As shiny as a diamond”). Then have the students feel the Kiss. Again, the teacher will make a student-generated list of how the Kiss feels…and so on until the students have finally tasted the Kiss and described with a simile. Independent Practice: Pass out a tag-board Kiss, a piece of foil, and a strip of adding machine paper to each student. The students will cover their Kiss with foil, and write their favorite simile used to describe their Kiss onto the piece of adding machine paper. Staple the adding machine tape to the top of the Kiss, like the flag on the top of the actual Kiss. Publishing/Sharing: The Kisses with their simile flags will be displayed on a bulletin board. (Perfect for a Valentine’s Day activity)
Effective Conclusions Definition: The point of exit that shapes the impression that will stay with the readers when they have finished reading.
Mentor Text: The Lotus Seed by Sherry Garland My grandmother saw the emperor cry the day he lost his golden dragon throne. (First sentence) Someday I will plant it and give seeds to my own children and tell them about the day my grandmother saw the emperor cry. (Last sentence)
My Mama Had a Dancing Heart by Libba Moore Gray And afterward I imagine my mama saying “Bless the world it feels like a tip-tapping, songsinging, finger-snapping kind of day. Let’s celebrate!” My mama had a dancing heart, and she shared that heart with me.(First and last sentence)
Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes Wemberly worried about everything. (First sentence) Wemberly turned and smiled and waved, “I will,” she said. “Don’t worry.”(Last sentence)
Other Mentor Texts: Enemy Pie by Derek Munson John Henry by Julius Lester
M.E.A.L. Conclusions Leave your reader full, fat and happy! Objective: Students will write an effective conclusion using the mnemonic M.E.A.L. Anticipatory Set: Read The Lotus Seed by Sherry Garland, pointing out how the conclusion circles back to the theme of the story and shows anticipation.
My grandmother saw the emperor cry the day he lost his golden dragon throne. (First sentence) Someday I will plant it and give seeds to my own children and tell them about the day my grandmother saw the emperor cry.(Last sentence)
Modeling: Using the mentor text, illustrate how an effective ending circles back to the first sentence of the story, and leaves an impression on the reader. In The Lotus Seed, the phrase, Someday I will plant it and give seeds to my own children and tell them about the day my grandmother saw the emperor cry circles back to the beginning of the story, My grandmother saw the emperor cry…as well as creates anticipation, Someday… Guided Practice: Using the mnemonic M.E.A.L. help students create other effective conclusions by charting several examples together. M Memory- “I will always remember…” “I will never forget…” E Emotion- “I felt…” A Anticipation- “I can hardly wait…” “Someday…” “One day…” L Lesson Learned- “I promise you I will…” “Still to this day…” Independent Practice: Students will be given incomplete writing pieces and asked to create an effective ending for each. This can be done by leaving the ending off a shared picture book or student paper. Publishing/Sharing: Students will share and critique their conclusions based on the skills incorporated.
Circular Conclusions Tie it Up! Objective: Students will write an effective conclusion that relates back to the main idea and leaves an impression with the reader. Anticipatory Set: Read My Mama Had a Dancing Heart by Libba Moore Gray, pointing out how the conclusion relates back to the main idea, reiterating the theme throughout the story. And afterward I imagine my mama saying… My mama had a dancing heart, and she shared that heart with me.
Modeling: The teacher will illustrate, using the mentor texts, how an effective ending relates back to the first sentence of the story, and leaves an impression on the reader. In My Mama Had a Dancing Heart, the phrase My mama had a dancing heart, and she shared that heart with me… is stated in the beginning and the end of the writing piece, bringing the writing full circle. Guided Practice: Using prior FCAT prompts, utilize circling back to the topic by creating effective conclusions with key words inserted from the prompt. For example, Now, write a story about a time you had a day off from school. First Sentence - I should have ducked that fateful day. Last Sentence - Believe me when I say, the next time my dad yells “duck!” you can be sure I will be ducking! Now, explain to the reader why it is important to follow rules. First Sentence - I felt just terrible when my little brother broke his arm. Last Sentence - I will always remember that it is important to follow the rules, especially when it comes to broken limbs!
Independent Practice: Students will be given incomplete writing pieces or choose an earlier piece from their writing folder and asked to create an effective circular ending for each. Publishing/Sharing: Students will share and critique their conclusions based on the skills incorporated.
Hook Definition: Draw your reader in with an interesting beginning. Mentor Text: My Olâ€™ Man by Patricia Polacco Whenever I get quiet and still inside and wish I was little again, all I have to do is think about my summer in Michigan. When I do this, it isnâ€™t now anymore, it is then again. How I Became a Pirate by David Shannon Pirates have green teeth - when they have any teeth at all. I know about pirates, because one day, when I was at the beach building a sand castle and minding my own business, a pirate ship sailed into view. Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by Ronni Schotter Eva unwrapped a cinnamon Danish, opened her notebook, and stared helplessly at the wide, white paper.
Other Mentor Texts:
Amber on the Mountain by Tony Johnston All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan Enemy Pie by Derek Munson Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg Miss Alaineus: A Vocabulary Disaster by Debra Frasier
Hooks - Make ‘em Great
Objective: Students will learn to identify good beginnings of narratives, explain why some beginnings are better than others, write a good beginning for a common class topic, and write three good beginnings for their own narratives. Anticipatory Set: Read the first sentence or two of several mentor texts that you have chosen as models of good hooks and discuss why you like them. Modeling: Tell students that you are writing a story and you are going to write three different beginnings. On the board or document camera, write three different beginnings, including one negative example. For example, o
Last summer I went to the beach. We had a lot of fun.
I woke up and peered out the window. It was a gorgeous day. When I headed downstairs, I said to my mom, “Let’s go to the beach today!” o It was only 6:45 am and already the temperature was a blistering 80 degrees. I couldn’t take another day of swimming in my own sweat! There was only one solution. I hollered downstairs, “Hey guys, who wants to go to the beach today?!” o
Have students pick the beginning that would make them want to read more. Discuss reasons why the beginning they chose is more interesting than the other beginnings. Guided Practice: Tell students they will write the beginning of a story. Together, brainstorm a topic, perhaps a field trip or common class activity. List these ideas on the board. Let students vote on or select one idea. Ask them to think of a great beginning for the story topic selected. Tell students as they write you will place two stickers on their desk. They will be given instructions for using the stickers a little later. Remind students to think of the beginnings they heard earlier. In small groups, ask students to read aloud their beginnings. Ask students to take their two stickers, and place them on the papers in their group with the two beginnings they like best. Students count the stickers on their papers. Ask groups to share their two best beginnings with the class. Discuss what makes each beginning interesting. Independent Practice: Students select one story from their writing folder. Have them write 3 different beginnings for their story. Publishing/Sharing: Have students read their beginnings to a partner and have the partner pick the beginning that would make them want to read the rest of the story.
Hooks With Sounds and Voices Objective: Students will implement a good beginning, or hook, in their writing pieces, understanding that an effective hook will draw their reader in and leave them wanting to read more. Anticipatory Set: The teacher will read several mentor text beginnings. Modeling: The teacher will demonstrate two examples of an effective hook: onomatopoeia or a quote. Wah-BAM! Mom slammed the door as she entered the house and saw the mess. “WHAT IN THE WORLD HAPPENED HERE?” Mom shouted when she entered the house and saw the mess. Beep-beep-beep! My alarm was blaring before the sun was even up. It was going to be an adventurous day. “Wake up, sleepy head!” my grandma called from my doorway before the sun was even up. It was going to be an adventurous day.
Guided Practice: The teacher will put several prompts on the board or projector. Based on the prompt, brainstorm several effective hooks for each prompt- one onomatopoeia and one quote.
Independent Practice: Have students select one story from their writing folder. Have them write two new beginnings, one using onomatopoeia and one using a quote.
Publishing/Sharing: Students share their new hooks, reading the original and then reading the revised beginning with the new hook.
Transitional Phrases Definition: Move the reader from one thought or event to another. Mentor Text: Through Grandpa’s Eyes by Patricia MacLachlan In the morning, the sun pushes through the curtains into my eyes. When I open my eyes again, I can see Grandpa nodding at me. After breakfast, I follow Grandpa’s path through the dining room to the living room. Later, Nana brings out her clay to sculpt… While she works, Grandpa takes out a piece of wood. As we walk back to the house, Grandpa stops suddenly. Before Grandpa leaves, he pulls the light chain above my bed to turn out the light. Dog Breath by Dav Pilkey Later that night, when everyone was sound asleep, two sneaky burglars crept into the Tosis house. How I Became a Pirate by Melinda Long When the storm was over, we rowed back to shore and buried the chest. The Night I Followed the Dog by Nina Laden For a minute that seemed like forever, I waited.
Other Mentor Texts: A Bad Case of the Stripes by David Shannon The Hickory Chair by Lisa Rowe Faustino
We Like To Move It- Move It! Objective: Students will be able to identify and effectively implement transitional phrases to successfully move their writing along. Anticipatory Set: Read Through Grandpa’s Eyes by Patricia MacLachlan, making sure to highlight all of the transitional phrases throughout the text and reiterating how they move the story along. In the morning, the sun pushes through the curtains into my eyes. When I open my eyes again… After breakfast… Later, While she works… Modeling: Create a list of day-to-day activities. As a non-example, on one side of a paper, write “First, my alarm goes off. Next, I get out of bed,” etc. On the other side, brainstorm with the students how to make those transitions better. “At 5:30 in the morning, my alarm goes off. After hitting the snooze three times, I get out of bed,” etc. Guided Practice: In pairs, the students will work on the steps-in-a-process for the last 30 minutes of school (or any consistent time period in the school day), creating a lesson plan for a substitute. The emphasis will be on the transitional phrases. “At 2:00, we close our social studies books. Once the books are closed, we will put them into our desks and pull out our planners. Placing them on our desks, we open them to today’s date,” etc. Independent Practice: The students will prepare a recipe for the class. They could make a peanut butter sandwich, root beer float, s’mores, or any quick snack that could be made in front of the class. Again, the emphasis will be on the transitional phrases. The students write their recipe and prepare to bring it in and share it with the class. If the student is not able to bring in the actual materials, they can create them from craft items (construction paper, containers, etc.) This would also work if the student wanted to create an “outside-the-box” recipe. Publishing/Sharing: While reading directly from the recipe they have created, the students will prepare their snack in front of the class.
Move Along Objective: Students will be able to utilize transitional phrases in their writing to move the writing along.
Anticipatory Set: The teacher will read The Hickory Chair by Lisa Rowe Faustino and note the transitional phrases throughout the story.
Modeling: Using a state-scored student paper or an anonymous student paper, highlight the transitional phrases throughout the writing piece. Together as a class, brainstorm more mature transitional phrases and edit the paper. Read the revised piece aloud and discuss how the transitions help to move the piece along.
Guided Practice: The teacher will hide little slips of paper, like Grandma did in The Hickory Chair, around the room. These little slips of paper will contain mature transitional phrases. In pairs, the students will go on a scavenger hunt, looking for little notes that have been left around the room. Returning to their desks, the students will tell the teacher their transitions, and the teacher will record them on a chart or use the doc cam. With the teacher’s assistance, the students will turn those transitional phrases into complete sentences, telling the reader where they went on their hunt and where they found their notes. “Around the corner…” “A little while later…” “Just after breakfast…” “Once we arrived…” “The next part is phenomenal…” “In the meantime…” “In the blink of an eye…” “Before I knew what was happening…”
Independent Practice: Students will select a previous draft, editing and adding mature transitional phrases to help effectively move the story along.
Publishing/Sharing: Students will share their stories.
Ellipsis Definition: Indicates a pause in the flow of a sentence, or to indicate an omission of words, or to trail off on a sentence. Mentor Text: Piggie Pie by Margie Palatini Today Gritch wanted something truly tasty. Something really yummy. Something SPECIAL! And that could only mean … The Web Files by Margie Palatini and Richard Egielski “Things looked black for the boy in blue. And then … we got another call.” “Peppers? Tomatoes? Lettuce?... What do you make out of all this, Web?” “My partner and I were hot on the trail of …That Dirty Rat.” “Make it quick, Quaker …you’re interrupting my lunch.” A Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon “Wait!” she cried. “The truth is … I really love lima beans.” Dog Breath by Dav Pilkey They hoped that all the excitement would leave Hally breathless …but it didn’t. Night Noises by Mem Fox Butch Aggie listened … but Lily Laceby kept on dreaming. Bedhead by Margie Palatini In a gunkless corner of the soapy silver soap dish … in a fogless smidgen of his father’s foggy shaving mirror … right there on the hot water faucet, for heaven’s sake … he saw it! It was BIG. It was BAD. It was … Bedhead!
Other Mentor Texts: Bullfrog Pops by Rick Walton Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen
Wait for it… Objective: Students will add ellipsis to indicate a pause in the flow of the sentence in order to build suspense.
Anticipatory Set: Read Bullfrog Pops. Note the use of ellipsis at the end of each page in order to indicate a build up of suspense before the page is turned.
Modeling: Write the sentence, “Last night I watched a horror show on television that kept me from …” Ask the class what would be a likely choice of words for the next page. After gathering words (most likely “sleeping”) write, “babysitting the neighborhood kids.” Explain that just like Bullfrog Pops, the stage is being set for a surprise finish.
Guided Practice: Take the babysitting idea and compose the sentence, “Babysitting the wild, unruly kids next door resulted in …” With the help of the students, ask for endings that would be surprisingly unexpected. For example, “a chance meeting with the Avon door-to-door saleslady,” could be the next page.
Independent Practice: Students work in pairs to create a series of beginning sentences that end with an ellipsis and complete the thought with a surprising ending on the back page.
Publishing/Sharing: Students share their sentences with the class. Illustrating would be an extension activity that could also flummox the reader with miscues. For example, “Babysitting the wild, unruly kids next door resulted in …” could be a picture of a babysitter on the verge of a whopping headache, and the next illustration could be the Avon lady at the door.
ADD … Drama! Objective: Students will effectively use ellipsis in their writing to add a dramatic pause and build suspense. Anticipatory Set: Read one of the mentor texts that illustrate ellipsis and how, when used in writing, it adds to the suspense of a story. Modeling: Read portions of Night Noises by Mem Fox pointing out the ellipses that build suspense. For example, “Butch Aggie’s throat rumbled … but Lily Laceby went on dreaming. Hands tried to turn doorknobs. Butch Aggie bared her teeth … but Lily Laceby went on dreaming.” Guided Practice: Create index cards: half of them will have beginnings with ellipsis and half of them will have endings. The class will be broken into two groups. Each student will receive a card with either a beginning or an ending. The goal will be for the students to pair up with their respective half and create a dramatic sentence. The sirens were blaring… My mom was furious… I jumped up and down with joy…
there was a tornado on its way. the vase lay shattered on the floor. I received an A on my spectacular project!
Independent Practice: Using the sentence they created with their partner, students will write a “quick write” utilizing the dramatic sentence as the topic. A quick write is when the student quickly writes (10-15 minutes) and does not move through the writing process. The student may take any quick write and take it through the process at a later date. Publishing/Sharing: Students will share their stories with their partners and with the entire class. Students can also select previous writing pieces and add ellipsis to enhance the drama and suspense.
Emotion Words Definition: Describe feelings/moods Mentor Text: Amber on the Mountain by Tony Johnston Sometimes Amber read a few words. Then she stumbled. Sometimes she forgot the words and had to start all over. She was so eager; she hurried and tangled the words like quilting thread. “Drat!” Amber grumbled. “I plain can’t do this!”
My Ol’ Man by Patricia Polacco “Sales are down. Times are hard. Varney had to let me go today,” Da said as he tried to smile. “I couldn’t believe it,” my dad fired! “We’ll get by William,” my gramma said softly as she touched his hand.
Under the Quilt of Darkness by Deborah Hopkinson “Freedom!” I take a deep breath and when I let it go my voice flies up in a song. My own song of running in sunshine and dancing through fields. I’ll jump every fence in my way.
Other Mentor Texts: How Are You Peeling? by Saxton Freeman What Are You So Grumpy About? By Tom Lichtenheld The Way I Feel by Janan Cain Feelings to Share From A-Z by Todd Snow Today I Feel Silly & Other Moods that Make My Day by Jamie Lee Curtiss
Physical Cues Objective: After reading picture books, students will identify emotions, emotion cues, and the reason for this emotion. Anticipatory Set: Read one of the mentor texts and point out emotions throughout the book. Discuss other emotion words and descriptions. Modeling: Draw a three columned table on the board. Label the tops of the columns with the following terms: Emotion Words Overjoyed Merry Thrilled
Physical Cues Punching the air with fist Smiling, laughing Jumping up and down
Reasons Won a competition Weekend begins Great report card
The examples described below use “happy” for the purpose of demonstration: • • •
Examples of emotion words that describe happy feelings: overjoyed, merry, thrilled. The physical cues that often accompany happy feelings (for example, jumping up and down, grinning, cheering, laughing, etc.) Point out to students that when they see these “clues” in another person, that person may be happy. The reasons someone may be feeling this emotion. The more intense the happiness, the stronger the emotion word.
Guided Practice: Have students brainstorm as many different feelings as they can and list them on the board. Group similar feelings (ie angry, mad, furious, etc.) together. Working together the students will create their own chart using the list of words from the board.
Independent Practice: Have students practice elaboration using emotions by rewriting sentences such as, The boy was happy when he won the competition. This sentence can be revised by adding physical cues and stronger emotion words to create a word picture for the reader. An example would be, Punching the air with his fist, the boy was overjoyed when he heard he won the competition.
Publishing/Sharing: Students share their new sentences.
Mood Swings Objective: Students will identify specific emotion words in a passage. Students will replace basic emotion words with more specific emotion words in their writing. Anticipatory Set: Start the lesson by playing the song or singing the song, â€œIf You Are Happy and You Know It, Clap Your Hands.â€? Explain to the class that they will be focusing on integrating specific emotion words into their writing. Ask students to make a facial expression to represent a vague emotion announced. (sad, happy, mad, etc.) Write these words on the board. Modeling: Refer to the emotion words that are written on the board. Explain to the students that there are specific emotion words that create a more vivid mental image for each of the above feelings. Use mentor texts, thesauruses, and student feedback to record more specific emotion words for the basic emotion words listed on the board. Sad - unhappy, melancholy, mournful, heavyhearted, anguished, blue, crestfallen Mad - upset, angry, furious, disappointed, irritated, livid, enraged, frustrated Happy - delighted, elated, joyful, blissful, ecstatic, jovial, gleeful
Guided Practice: Provide a list of emotion words and a list of situations. The students will work cooperatively to list all of the emotion words that relate to the situations provided. Example: Situation- You are at an amusement park and are in line to ride a roller coaster for the very first time. Emotions- scared, anxious, nervous, excited, fearful Situation- You just received an award for making all Aâ€™s on your report card. Emotions- proud, confident, elated, honored
Independent Practice: Provide a list of specific emotion words. The students will choose one specific emotion word and draw a picture of a face representing that emotion. The student will title their page with the emotion word. Surrounding the illustration, the student will write down as many specific emotion words that are synonymous to the title. Publishing/Sharing: The students will share their final pieces aloud. The teacher will display the pieces on the bulletin board or make them into a class book.
Flashback Definition: Breaks the present action of the story to reveal an event from an earlier time. It provides background information to help the reader understand the story, and flashback often contributes to the mood, characters, theme, or setting of the story. Mentor Text: Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox She put a shell to her ear and remembered going to the beach by tram long ago and how hot she had felt in her button-up boots. My Ol’ Man by Patricia Polacco Whenever I get quiet and still inside and wish I was little again, all I have to do is think about my summers in Michigan. When I do this, it isn’t now anymore, it is then again. Our Tree Named Steve by Alan Zweibel I remember there was one tree, however, that the three of you couldn’t stop staring at. Adam thought it was crying. Lindsay said it looked nervous, and Sari, who was only two years old, couldn’t pronounce the word tree, and called it Steve.
Other Mentor Texts: My Mama Had a Dancing Heart by Libba Moore Gray One Small Bead by Byrd Baylor Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney My Parents Learned to Eat by Ina R. Friedman In My Own Backyard by Judi Kurjian Why the Chicken Crossed the Road by David MacAulay Pink and Say by Patricia Polacco The House on Maple Street by Bonnie Pryor The Wreck of the Zephyr by Chris Van Allsburg Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Viorst
A Memory Slice
Objective: Students will identify flashback in stories and write one of their own.
Anticipatory Set: Read My Mama Had a Dancing Heart by Libba Moore Gray. The first part of the book flashes back to when the character was a little girl, then transitions to the present day toward the end of the story. Use this story to introduce flashback. Define flashback as a literary skill that breaks the present action of the story to reveal an event from an earlier time. It provides background information to help the reader understand the story. Flashback often contributes to the mood, characters, theme, or setting of the story.
Modeling: Share something that is going on right now in your life. For example, describe an event such as your daily routine of jogging after school. Tell the student that you will go back in time and tell them about the time when you first began jogging, specifically why you took it up.
Guided Practice: Present a current situation that is happening to the class at school. For example, describe the fact that everyday the students must have 30 minutes of physical activity. Then with students create a flashback of why this situation occurred.
Independent Practice: Ask the students to think about something they are dealing with now. Then go back to the beginning and write down why this situation occurred. Work with individuals as they compose their short written explanations of why this situation occurred.
Publishing/Sharing: Students share a current situation and then interject their written piece as a flashback.
Turn Back Time Objective: Students will incorporate flashbacks in an original writing piece as part of their elaboration. Anticipatory Set: Arrive wearing scrubs, a surgeon mask, gloves, and a stethoscope. (If these items are not available, a lab coat from the science lab will be sufficient.) Announce to the students, “Today we will be performing story surgery. We will be adding flashbacks as part of our elaboration.” Next, review the definition of a flashback. (It is a literary skill that breaks the present action of the story to reveal an event from an earlier time.) Modeling: Read a narrative or expository. This may be a piece that the students have worked on previously. This particular piece may be lacking elaboration, but have an obvious segue, so that flashback may be inserted. Read through the story once again and stop at the section where a flashback may be added. Stop reading the story and begin “thinking aloud” sharing memories with the class about this particular event. Express how using certain transitional phrases such as, “I remember when…” “Thinking back…” “One time…” “Let’s reminisce…”, etc. will provide background information to help the reader understand the story better. It will also add voice, details, and mood to the piece. Write the flashback on a separate piece of paper. Next, cut the original piece directly above where the flashback will be inserted. Attach the flashback with either Band-aids or surgical tape. Finally, discuss how performing “story surgery” enhances the original piece. Guided Practice: Pass out a current or previous piece that the students have written. Each student will draw a stick figure on a blank piece of paper as the teacher draws one on the board. Each student will reread their paper and identify an ideal place to insert a flashback. Demonstrate how to use the stick figure as a graphic organizer for recording memories of the flashback. (For example- the feet can represent the places traveled or where you were, the heart can represent feelings- the head can represent thoughts, etc.) The students will use their original piece to fill in their graphic organizer to help them develop their flashback. Independent Practice: The students will use their stick figure graphic organizers to create an elaboration paragraph including flashback. Next, the students will perform story surgery on their original pieces as the teacher demonstrated during the modeling section of this lesson. (If desired, the students may wear stethoscopes, surgical masks, or even Band-aids while performing their “story surgeries.”) Publishing/Sharing: The students’ new stories can be displayed on a bulletin board.
Foreshadowing Definition: Gives the reader a clue that something very important will happen later in the story. Mentor Text: Enemy Pie by Derek Munson It should have been a perfect summer. My dad helped me build a treehouse in our backyard. My sister was at camp for three whole weeks. And I was on the best baseball team in town. It should have been a perfect summer. But it wasn’t. John Henry by Julius Lester The next morning all was still. The birds weren’t singing and the roosters weren’t crowing…On the other side was John Henry. Next to the mountain he didn’t look much bigger than a wish that wasn’t going to come true. Davy’s Scary Journey by Christine Leeson Davy Duckling lived with his mother by a stream that flowed through a wood. All summer long Davy paddled happily in the water, but sometimes he watched other birds flying high overhead and wondered what lay beyond the trees. The Graves Family Goes Camping by Patricia Polacco “I feel like we have forgotten something,” Dr. Graves said thoughtfully. Other Mentor Texts: Encounter by Jane Yolen Owl Moon by Jane Yolen Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak Amber on the Mountain by Tony Johnston Shortcut by David MacAulay Just Plain Fancy by Patricia Polacco Grandfather’s Journey by Allen Say The Stranger by Chris Van Allsburg The Incredible Painting of Felix Classeau by John Agee The Hat by Jan Brett How Many Days to America?: A Thanksgiving Story by Eve Bunting and Beth Peck
Things to Come Objective: Students will add a paragraph with foreshadowing in an on-going story.
Anticipatory Set:. Explain that foreshadowing is like a clue of something that will happen later in the story. Read the examples of foreshadowing from the mentor texts. Ask students if they ever recall a movie that had foreshadowing in it. Tell the students they must be detectives to find the clues of foreshadowing.
Modeling: Write an introduction to a story demonstrating foreshadowing. For example, “Sally raced into town with a smile on her face. She thought this would be the greatest day ever, but she would soon find out differently.”
Guided Practice: Explain that for this foreshadowing example, the character will lose something that will be integral later to the story. For example, with the help of the students write something like, “Bobby pulled out his handkerchief to wipe the sweat from his forehead. He didn’t see his lucky gold coin drop from his pocket onto the bare dirt floor. The gold coin sparkled in the midday sun as Bobby got back on his bike and pedaled away from his treasure. Bobby’s luck had just changed.”
Independent Practice: Challenge the students to write their own introduction to a story with foreshadowing. Present the mentor text and encourage the students to select one for an example. Their writing could emulate this example by just changing the words, but keeping the sentence structure. This could be done as a “quick write” and selected later to finish through the writing process.
Publishing/Sharing: Students share their quick write foreshadowing piece of writing. At the conclusion of each student’s sharing the audience responds with a “Da da da dum-m-m!” to indicate the suspense that will surely follow, IF in fact the author has created foreshadowing
Super Sleuthing Objective: Students will identify foreshadowing in picture books and add foreshadowing to one of their drafts.
Anticipatory Set: Read Enemy Pie by Derek Munson. Define foreshadowing as an event that occurs in the story that acts like a clue for something that will happen later in the story. It should have been a perfect summer. My dad helped me build a tree house in our backyard. My sister was at camp for three whole weeks. And I was on the best baseball team in town. It should have been a perfect summer. But it wasn’t.
Modeling: Point out the following sentence: “It should have been a perfect summer. But it wasn’t.” This is a clue that something not-so-perfect is going to happen in the story. Using the picture book, Enemy Pie, demonstrate completing one line of the Foreshadowing Chart (follows lesson). The teacher would write the title, author, event (the summer that the enemy, Jeremy Ross, moved in), and clue that it would happen (“It should have been a perfect summer. But it wasn’t.”).
Guided Practice: Working in small groups, hand out several books with foreshadowing. The students work as detectives to find foreshadowing in the story and tag it with a sticky note. You may want to note the page ahead of time, and have the students read that one page from the book, writing down the foreshadowing. If this procedure is followed, then the students could pass the books among the groups with each group recording the foreshadowing on the tagged pages. A chart follows for this activity.
Independent Practice: Individually, the students return to their desks, reread former drafts to find a piece that would work with foreshadowing and insert that clue in an on-going draft. (This portion of the lesson could be done on day 2)
Publishing/Sharing: Students share their foreshadowing examples in their written pieces.
Clue It Would Happen
Sensory Words Definition: Words that describe how something looks, sounds, tastes, smells and feels. For examples, sparkles (looks), crunching (sounds), bitter (tastes), moldy (smells), rough (feels). Mentor Text: All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan We jumped from rock to rock, across the river to where the woods began, where bunchberry grew under the pine-needle path and trillium bloomed. Under the beech tree was a soft, rounded bed where a deer had slept. The bed was warm when I touched it. Amber on the Mountain by Tony Johnston When it snowed and the world outside was muffled in white, she huddled under a quilt so only her hands poked out. Cold and stiff, she formed her letters.
I Love You the Purplest by Barbara M. Joosse The lake slowed its thrashing to a soft, even beat. The mosquitoes dipped low to the water and the water bugs skittered on top. The moon glowed on one side of the lake while the sun shimmered on the other.
My Ol’ Man by Patricia Polacco Just then the sun streaked through the trees above and made a shaft of light that beamed right where the rock had been.
Under the Quilt of Night by Deborah Hopkinson It’s hot. Sweat dribbles down my neck. Thorns rake my arms and legs. In the still afternoon, mosquitoes whine and tease just like the overseer’s children did.
A Room with a View
Objective: Students will identify sensory words and will describe their favorite places using sensory language. Anticipatory Set: Read the samples from the mentor text and discuss the sensory words. Modeling: Ask students: “How would you describe our classroom to a person who has never seen it? You might say it has four walls and a ceiling. Would that tell them what our room is like? It probably would not give the person a clear picture of our classroom. For a person to really understand what our room is like, you need to tell them all the details that make our room special.” Write the words Our Classroom on the whiteboard or chart paper. Below that, write the headings: see, hear, smell. Use a different color for each heading to help students differentiate between categories. Write one sensory word for each of the categories listed and add the heading: feelings (the word feelings is added after the tone of the lesson is set with see, hear and smell). Write a sensory word that describes the feelings of the classroom. Guided Practice: The students will contribute sensory words to the list or chart that describe how their classroom looks, sounds, feels, and smells. The teacher will add these words to the whiteboard or chart paper. Once the chart or list is complete, the teacher and students will write a descriptive paragraph about their classroom. For example, The best classroom at Seaside Elementary is Mrs. Emerald’s 4th grade. Colorful writing posters are plastered all over the blue walls. The bright fluorescent lights buzz throughout the room and the fresh, clean aroma permeates the air. Independent Practice: The students will write about their favorite room. The students will close their eyes and think of their favorite room. Have them imagine themselves in that room. “What does it look like? Are there any pictures on the walls? What do they do in this room and how does the room make them feel?” The students will create sensory word charts like the teacher’s model and will write descriptive paragraphs (using their chart) about their favorite room. Publishing/Sharing: The students will illustrate their rooms and will attach their writing and display them on a bulletin board entitled A Room with a View.
A Thrilling Ride! Objective: Students will be able to identify sensory words and effectively use them to enhance their writing.
Anticipatory Set: Read samples from the mentor texts and discuss the sensory words. If possible, students will go to an open computer lab and work independently, or the teacher may pull up the following web site on the projector: www.cedarpoint.com Students will look under rides/thrill rides/roller coasters. Encourage students to “ride” the roller coasters by clicking on the video links that offer a virtual ride. While on the site, the students may look up information about the roller coasters: height, maximum speed, number of inversions, etc.
Modeling: Relay what it would be like to actually ride the roller coaster. Describe the wait in line, the anticipation before reaching the front of the line, what the actual ride would be like, the feel of the restraints, the sound of the car climbing the first hill…and after the ride is over, is there a race to get back in line or to move on to a new ride?
Guided Practice: Place 5 pieces of chart paper on the chalkboard with the words “See, Hear, Smell, Touch, Taste” written across the top. Break the class into 5 groups and give each group a different color marker. Have the students “carousel” around the room in their groups, placing ideas of what they might see, hear, smell, touch and taste before, during and after riding the roller coaster. Each group must come up with their own sensory images or build upon the previous group’s. Go over all of the word lists together.
Independent Practice: Leaving the word lists up around the room, have the students write a descriptive paragraph about a roller coaster ride incorporating sensory words.
Publishing/Sharing: Have the students share their paragraphs with the class.
Thoughtshots Definition: Character’s thoughts that add detail with flashbacks, flash-aheads, and internal dialogue. Authors use thoughtshots to make their characters more interesting and believable. Types of Thoughtshots: Flashback: A character thinks back about something that has already happened. Flash-Ahead: A character thinks about something that is going to happen or might happen in the future. Internal Dialogue: A character thinks about what is happening at that moment in the story. Mentor Text: Sylvester and the Magic Pebble by William Steig He was scared and worried. Being helpless, he felt hopeless. He imagined all the possibilities, and eventually he realized that his only chance of becoming himself again was for someone to find the red pebble and to wish that the rock next to it would be a donkey. Someone would surely find the red pebble- it was so bright and shiny- but what on earth would make them wish that a rock were a donkey? The chance was one in a billion at best. Appelemando’s Dreams by Patricia Polacco All Applemando could think of were the bitter words of the elders, the people who didn’t believe him, and try as he might, nothing would appear in his mind. There was no dream.
Jumanji by Chris VanAllsburg Peter looked down at the game board. What if Judy rolled a seven? Then there’d be two lions. For an instant Peter thought he was going to cry.
Other Mentor Texts: Miss Spider’s Tea Party by David Kirk A Chair for My Mother by Vera Williams The Relatives Came by Cynthia Rylant Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco Verdi by Janell Cannon Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco The Old Woman Who Named Things by Cynthia Rylant
Objective: Students will recognize the writing technique of thoughtshots (i.e. flashbacks, flashaheads, and internal dialogue) used in mentor text.
Anticipatory Set: Read the samples from the mentor text and identify the thoughtshots. Identify each thoughtshot as a flashback, flash-ahead or internal dialogue.
Modeling: Read the book Thunder Cake By Patricia Polacco. As the book is read, identify the thoughtshots in the story. After reading the book, display the three different types of thoughtshots found in Thunder Cake. See the examples below. Flashback Thoughtshot: The sound used to scare me when I was little. I loved to go to Grandmaâ€™s house (Babushka, as I used to call my grandma, had come from Russia years before), but I feared Michiganâ€™s summer storms. I feared the sound of thunder more than anything. I always hid under the bed when the storm moved near the farmhouse. Flash-Ahead Thoughtshot: Eggs from mean old Nellie Peck Hen. I was scared. I knew she would try to peck me. Internal Dialogue Thoughtshot: I was scared as we walked down the path from the farmhouse through Tangleweed Woods to the dry shed. Suddenly, lightning slit the sky.
Guided Practice: Read one of the books from the mentor text list. While reading, the students will identify the thoughtshots in the book and will classify them as a flashback, flash-ahead or internal dialogue. NOTE: Sometimes the thoughtshot is both internal dialogue and a flash-ahead.
Independent Practice: The students will be arranged in small groups and each group will receive a book from the mentor text list found on the previous page. The group will decide on one student to read the book aloud while the other students identify the thoughtshots in the book. One member of the group will record the thoughtshots from the book. Encourage students to find each type of thoughtshot. After all thougtshots are recorded, the group will identify the thoughtshots as a flashback, flash-ahead, or internal dialogue.
Publishing/Sharing: Each group will share one thoughtshot and the other groups will identify the type of thoughtshot that was presented.
Adding Character to Your Writing Objective: Students will recognize the writing technique of thoughtshots (i.e. flashbacks, flashaheads, and internal dialogue) used in mentor text. The students will identify these three types of thoughtshots in the picture book The Old Woman Who Named Things by Cynthia Rylant. Anticipatory Set: Read the picture book The Old Woman Who Named Things by Cynthia Rylant. Identify the three types of thoughtshots in the picture book. Examples of the three thoughtshots are noted below. Modeling: Prepare a chart entitled Thoughtshots, with the subtitles Flashback, Flash-ahead, and Internal Dialogue underneath the heading. Identify and record the first thoughshot from the book (which is on page 14). It was a very pretty puppy, she thought. But it couldn’t stay. If it stayed she would have to give it a name… Discuss why this thoughtshot is an example of internal dialogue or flash-ahead. Guided Practice: Re-read page 21 aloud and ask the students to identify the thoughtshot, which is an example of internal dialogue: The old woman sat and thought about the shy brown dog who had no collar with a name…. After, guide the students to the thoughtshot and confirm that it is internal dialogue, and record the thoughtshot under Internal Dialogue. Repeat the same steps with the thoughshot on page 24. The old woman thought a moment. She thought of all the old, dear friends with names whom she had outlived. Record this thoughtshot and the students will identify it as a flashback. Independent Practice: For this lesson, the students will need to have a first draft of an original work that contains at least one human character (this could be a personal narrative or a fictional narrative). Review and briefly discuss the three types of thoughtshots. Tell students that in this lesson, they will practice writing original thoughshots. The students will add a thoughtshot to their writing and will identify it as internal dialogue, flashback or flash-ahead. Publishing/Sharing: The students will share the thoughtshots that they added to their writing and their classmates will identify their thoughtshot as internal dialogue, a flashback or flashahead. Encourage the students to write their thoughtshot in the form of a mentor text on the board, chart, or document camera.
Dazzling Color Words Definition: Words that paint vibrant pictures in the reader’s mind. Mentor Texts: Color Me a Rhyme by Jane Yolen He gave us chartreuse, olive, leek, emerald, ivy, beryl, amethyst, orchid, lavender, plum… Teacher Appreciation Day by Lynn Plourde The next day, when Mrs. Shepherd’s students got ready for school, they dressed in green, all shades of green- grassy green, lima-bean green, pickle green, olive green and leprechaun green. The Color of Us by Karen Katz My name is Lena, and I am seven. I am the color of cinnamon. My mom is the color of French toast. Lucy has skin that is peachy and tan. Aunt Kathy is tawny tan like coconuts and coffee toffee.
Other Mentor Texts: Go Away Big Green Monster by Ed Emberly Hailstones and Halibut Bones by Henry O’Neal
Color Your World Objective: Students will be able to recognize color words in literature and accurately implement them in their own writing. Anticipatory Set: Read the book, Color Me a Rhyme by Jane Yolen. Discuss basic color words such as red, green, blue, orange, etc. Modeling: Set up a page with the basic color word on top. This could be displayed on the board, document camera, or chart paper. As the book Color Me a Rhyme is read, “think aloud” to identify basic color words and list more elaborate color words beside them. Discuss the importance of using more elaborate color words in writing. Green- chartreuse, olive, leek, emerald, ivy, beryl Grey- dove, ash, smoke, silver, dust, steel Purple- amethyst, orchid, plum, lavender, violet, wine Orange- apricot, pumpkin, carrot, copper, tangerine Guided Practice: Pass out a collection of vibrant, elaborate colors (from paint swatches, nail polish catalogs, crayon boxes, etc). The students will work in small groups to observe and analyze the paint swatches and divide them into categories. The students will add these colors to their list from the previous activity. The whole class will share their results. (Day 2) Independent Practice: Read the book, Teacher Appreciation Day by Lynn Plourde. The students will listen to the following paragraph: The next day, when Mrs. Shepherd’s students got ready for school, they dressed in green, all shades of green- grassy green, lima-bean green, pickle green, olive green, and leprechaun green. The class will discuss how the different shades of green may look/differ. If possible, the students find examples of the colors mentioned above. Have the students work independently to create an outfit their character might wear on Teacher Appreciation Day. The students will design an outfit based on a basic color (yellow, green, black, orange, etc.) Each article of clothing or accessory will be colored in a more elaborate shade of the basic color. The student will label the article of clothing or accessory with the more elaborate color word. The students may also write a brief paragraph describing the outfit using specific color words. Publishing/Sharing: The students will share their finished product as a whole group. Examples can be made into a class book or displayed on a bulletin board. 48
The World Is A Rainbow! Objective: Students will be able to recognize vibrant color words in literature and accurately implement them in their own writing.
Anticipatory Set: Choose a mentor text from the list and share it with the class, pointing out the color words.
Modeling: Choose another mentor text to read to the students, illustrating more vibrant, mature color words. Red- scarlet, crimson, cherry, fire-engine Blue- azure, sky, ocean, periwinkle Yellow- lemon, sunshine, golden
Guided Practice: Create a large rainbow by cutting basic colors of construction paper. Make sure each color is large enough to write color words on, so that they are visible when on display. Divide the class into groups based on the basic colors they want to expand. Each group will take a color strip and research more vibrant, mature words to describe that color. For example, on the red strip, students could write scarlet, crimson, cherry, etc. They will write those vibrant words onto their colored construction paper using a dark marker so the words will show. Allow each group to share their colors, and have the students create a color bank in their writerâ€™s binder.
Independent Practice: The students will choose a writing piece from their writing binder. Using colored pencils, allow the students to add vibrant color words to their writing with carets.
Publishing/Sharing: The rainbow can be placed on display in the classroom for future reference along with the revised writing pieces.
Mature Words Definition: A higher level of vocabulary words Mentor Text: Fancy Nancy’s Favorite Fancy Words by Jane O’Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser Accessories-fancy word for extra stuff Guess who has more accessories than anybody in the entire world? Canine- fancy word for dog Watch! Frenchy is performing one of her many canine tricks! Dapper- fancy word for nicely dressed Usually my dad doesn’t look this dapper. Excursion- fancy word for a special trip Mrs. DeVine and Jewel make a weekly excursion to the beauty salon. Fiasco- fancy word for a big flop, a disaster I dropped all the parfaits. What a fiasco!
Fancy Nancy Explorer Extraordinaire! By Jane O’Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser Every class needs a clubhouse. It’s absolutely essential. That’s just immature, which is a fancy word for babyish. Fancy Nancy by Jane O’Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser I like to write my name with a pen that has a plume. That’s a fancy way of saying feather. Then I get an idea that is stupendous. That’s a fancy word for driver. The Boy Who Loves Words- by Ron Schotter His father, a practical man who sold sturdy shoes for a living, wondered what good could possibly come from a son with such a strange predilection. One night, Selig had a dream....Alone, in front of an unusual emporium, he encountered an oversized amphora. But now, whenever he felt word-heavy, he discovered the ideal places to sprinkle, disburse, and broadcast them.
Other Mentor Texts: The Secret Shortcut by Mark Teague Dinorella by Paula Duncan Edwards Otto Grows Down by Michael Sussman
A Mature Sense of Style Objective: Students will develop mature vocabulary and use it correctly in the context of their writing. Anticipatory Set: Send home a request for each student to bring in a blank t-shirt, preferably white. If your school receives any grants or funds from contributing sponsors, you could also ask if funds could be allocated for the purchase of t-shirts. The students will create a walking vocabulary bank of mature words to be worn on a certain day (i.e. every Friday). Using a Sharpie, permanent marker, or fabric paint, the students will place their favorite mature vocabulary words on their shirts. As the students walk around the school between activity, lunch, etc, encourage the faculty and staff to ask the students about their words and how they would use them in sentences. Students would continually add to their shirt throughout the year. Modeling: Using the document camera, read the book, Fancy Nancy by Jane O’Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser. Identify the mature vocabulary. Discuss the meaning of the mature vocabulary words. The students may want to add additional words to their t-shirts. Guided Practice: Using a thesaurus, students will gather mature words for use in future writing assignments. These words could be collected and put in an alphabetized word bank and stored in their writing binders. Independent Practice: Using either the students’ own former rough drafts or one of the score point 3 papers from a previously scored writing piece, the students work independently to bolster the plain vocabulary and make it “fancy.” Students should be encouraged to refer to their word banks.
You Have a Way With Words! Objective: Students will identify mature vocabulary within a text and incorporate it in their daily writing. Anticipatory Set: Display mature vocabulary words on index cards or sentence strips throughout the room. The students will pair up and walk around the room reading the words and discussing the following issues: Have I ever heard or seen this word before? Do I know the meaning of the word? If not, can I make an educated guess of the meaning of the word? Have I ever used this word before? Next, the pairs of students will flip the cards over and read the sentence that is written on the back. This sentence will have the mature word written in a sentence on the back of the card/strip. The students will use context clues to determine the meaning of the mature word. Modeling: Read the book, The Boy Who Loves Words by Ron Schotter. The pages will be displayed on a document camera. Identify mature vocabulary words as the book is read aloud. The teacher will discuss with the class the meaning of the mature vocabulary words. The teacher and students will discuss possible weak vocabulary words that the mature vocabulary words have replaced (see glossary located in back of story). Guided Practice: Provide a variety of Fancy Nancy books. The students will be given a piece of paper that will be folded in half (hot dog style). One side of the paper should be headed "Weak Words", while the other side should be headed "Mature Vocabulary." The students will work in pairs while reading through the Fancy Nancy books. The students will record the weak vocabulary words under the subheading "Weak Words", and then write down the more mature words under "Mature Vocabulary." Independent Practice: The students will chose an overused "weak" word such as nice, big, bad, good, pretty, etc. The students will use a thesaurus and a dictionary to create an "I'm Talkin..." poem (see example below). Publishing/Sharing: The students' posters will be displayed on a bulletin board. BIG I’m talking big! I’m talking huge! I’m talking enormous, immense, tremendous! I’m talking hulking, towering, titanic, mountainous! I’m talking maximum, massive, stupendous, gigantic, monumental! I'm talking BIG
Specificity Definition: Using proper nouns instead of common nouns and/or specific word choice to clarify meaning. Mentor Text: Bedhead by Margie Palatini Mary Margeret, who sat in the third row, four seats down, one desk across from Oliver in Mrs. Oppenheimer’s class at Biddlemeyer Elementary. Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by Roni Schotter Eva unwrapped a cinnamon Danish, opened her notebook, and stared helplessly at the wide, white pages. “Write about what you know,” her teacher, Mrs. DeMarco, had told her. So Eva sat high on the stoop and looked out over 90th Street waiting for something to happen.
My Ol’ Man by Patricia Polacco There’s our house on Middle Street. There’s our grandma in the winter light. She’s watering her plants. Those are her crepe-paper parrots. There’s Mr. Barkoviac, trying to get the mail past the Gaffners’ dog. I was making my way out near Rowley Church. Driving along, sweet and easy, when near Aunt Elisa’s woods the machine stopped, all by itself. I just sat there.
Other Mentor Texts: High as a Hawk by T.A. Barron The Graves Family Goes Camping by Patricia Polacco My Pony by Susan Jeffers When Lightning Comes in a Jar by Patricia Polacco The Graves Family Goes Camping by Patricia Polacco LaRue for Mayor by Mark Teague Grace for President by Kelly DiPucchio
Specific Nouns Objective: Students will add specific nouns to sentences. Anticipatory Set: Review or introduce specificity. Read aloud passages containing specificity from mentor texts. Modeling: Show the following vague sentence: He went to the theater to see a movie. Model revising the sentence as follows: Yesterday, Conner went to Cinemaworld to see Madagascar. Discuss the changes that help the reader learn more about who went, which theater he went to, and what movie was seen. Continue using the same procedure with the following examples for using specific nouns. Point out the importance of using specific nouns rather than vague nouns. Vague Example: He met him at the park. Specific Example: Grey met Brandon at Rotary Park. Weak Example: She went to the store to buy dinner. Strong Example: Cassandra went to Publix to buy meat, taco shells, seasoning, salsa, and cheese.
Guided Practice: Divide the class into groups. Give each group one of the following sentences written on a note card: o She saw a dog at the store. o My friend climbed a tree at his house. o One day we went to a theme park. o He went to the city to see a basketball game. o This year I had a nice teacher at school. Direct the students to work together to revise the sentences using precise nouns so the reader can have a clearer understanding. Allow students to share the revisions. Independent Practice: Have students complete a teacher-created-worksheet to check for understanding and/or have them revise a piece of writing to include more precise nouns. Publishing/Sharing: Students share their new sentences.
A PROPER PAPER Objective: Students will use specific, proper nouns to more effectively describe and create a picture for their reader. Anticipatory Set: Read several selected passages that contain specificity from mentor texts. Modeling: Use a student sample from the state writing assessment or a class student sample (anonymous) and edit the paper for specificity. Wherever a proper noun can be added, cross out the nonspecific noun and change it to a proper noun. Reread the edited text and discuss how the changes helped to create a more vivid mind picture. Guided Practice: Pass out a form similar to the example below and have the students write a proper noun for each item.
Vehicle and Color________ Movie and Theater________
Song and Artist_________
School and Teacher________ Book and Author________
The students keep this for future reference, either on their desk or in their writerâ€™s binder.
Independent Practice: The students will select an earlier draft from their writerâ€™s binder and revise, changing the common nouns to specific, proper nouns wherever possible.
Publishing/Sharing: The students will share their revised writing pieces with the class.
Vivid Verbs Definition: Words that better describe the action in the sentence. Weak: My brother Sam hurt me. Strong: My brother Sam pinched my arm. Mentor Text: A Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon Then the specialists went to work on Camilla. They squeezed and jabbed, tapped and tested. Bedhead by Margie Palatini Shuffle-slump, shlumped bleary-eyed Oliver out of bed, down the hall and into the bathroom. He yawned. He yanked, splashed some water. Swished some mouthwash. Dumpy LaRue by Elizabeth Winthrop “Pigs don’t dance,” said his mother. “They bellow, they swallow, they learn how to wallow. They fight, they march, they sport, and they snort. And they’re never ever supposed to cavort.” I Love You the Purplest by Barbara Joosse Julian planted his blue boots wide and took deep even strokes. Max braced his red boots against the ribs of the boat and stroked quickly through the water. The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Janet Stevens and Stevens Crummel The prairie dogs pulled it. Puffed it. Stretched it. Fluffed it. Tugged it. Twirled it. Spiked it. Swirled it. They fuzzed their ears, their heads, their noses. They fuzzed their feet, their tails, their toeses.
Other Mentor Texts: In the Small, Small Pond by Denise Fleming The Secret Shortcut by Mark Teague Zoom Broom by Margie Palatini
Strength Training Objectives: Students will understand the definition of a vivid verb and will identify vivid verbs in literature. The students will use vivid verbs in an acrostic poem. The students will replace weak verbs with strong verbs. Anticipatory Set: Read the samples from the mentor text and discuss the vivid verbs. Identify weak verbs verses strong verbs. Modeling: Model how to create an acrostic poem with vivid verbs. An acrostic poem is a word written vertically and each letter of the word leads into a word, phrase or sentence. Present the acrostic poem and identify the weak verbs and replace them with strong verbs. See the example below, the word is lawn. NOTE: The verbs are underlined in the acrostic poem: Leaves of grass burn in the sun (replace burn with sizzle) As the mower passes by (replace passes with zooms) Wisps of grass are cut (replace cut with sliced) Never getting away from the chopping blades (replace getting away with escaping)
Guided Practice: Brainstorm a list of ideas or words to use in an acrostic poem. Record the students’ ideas on chart paper or the whiteboard. Write the word “write” on the whiteboard or doc cam (vertically) and ask students for phrases, sentences or words that contain vivid verbs that pertain to the word “write.” See the sample below. The vivid verbs are underlined. Wrangling precise words from a hefty list of possibilities Recall precious memories and share them on paper Interesting narrative and expository essays pop with excitement Telling stories captivates your audience Excitement rolls through my mind when I get new ideas
Independent Practice: The students will write their own acrostic poem with vivid verbs. The students will use the brainstorming list that was generated for ideas or use an idea of their own.
Building Stronger Writing With Verbs Objective: Students will identify vivid verbs in literature. The students will replace weak verbs with more vivid verbs. Anticipatory Set: Tell the class that they are going to play a game of charades. Write weak verbs (one for every student) on folded pieces of paper and place in a basket. The students will volunteer to come up and randomly pick out a folded piece of paper. The students will act out the "weak" verb that is written on the folded piece of paper. The students will try and guess what word the student is acting out. Record the "weak" verbs that were guessed correctly on the board. Modeling: Share several mentor text selections and identify strong verbs. Write sentences containing weak verbs on the board. Underline the weak verb in each of the sentences and discuss why it is a weak verb. Next, discuss how they can improve the sentences by replacing the weak verb with a more vivid verb. Refer again to mentor texts. Finally, rewrite each of the sentences replacing the weak verb with a vivid verb. Model how to use a dictionary and/or thesaurus to find more vivid verbs to replace the weak verbs. The snake moved across the grass. The snake slithered across the grass. The child walked down the hall. The child perambulated down the hall. The boy ran over to the slide. The boy sprinted over to the slide. The child ate her dinner. The child devoured her dinner.
Guided Practice: Redirect the students to the weak verbs that are written on the board from the charades activity. The students will write each of the weak verbs in a sentence. Next, the students will use dictionaries and thesauruses to rewrite their original sentences replacing the weak verbs with vivid verbs. The whole class will share their responses. The class will discuss which sentences they thought contained the most vivid verbs. They will also discuss how these vivid verbs made the sentences more descriptive. Independent Practice: Each student will receive a template of a barbell (this can be traced on to construction paper). Each student will write a sentence that contains a weak verb on the bar. Next, the student will come up with as many vivid verbs as he/she can to replace the weak verb. The student will write each vivid verb on a weight (template provided by the teacher). Finally, the student will attach each weight to the barbell (these may be attached with glue, brads, or staples). Publishing/Sharing: The barbells with added weights attached will be posted on the bulletin board. 58
Alliteration Definition: Two or more words with the same beginning sound. Mentor Texts: Miss Alaineus by Debra Frasier I have a feeling this awesome ailment will cause me great agony soon. This berserk bacteria had bulldozed me badly. I am defective and delirious, and soon I will dwindle away. Canâ€™t you hear my gloomy groans and gruesome wails?
Piggie Pie by Margie Palatini Gritch the Witch woke up grouchy, grumpy and very hungry. I need eight plump piggies for Piggie Pie.
The Web Files by Margie Palatini About how many perfect purple almost-pickled peppers would you say were pilfered, pinched and picked?
Other Mentor Texts: Come On, Rain by Karen Hesse Lillyâ€™s Purple Plastic Purse by Kevin Menkes
Come On, Alliterations! Objective: Students will be able to identify examples of alliteration in text and effectively utilize alliteration to enhance writing pieces. Anticipatory Set: Define alliteration (two or more words that begin with the same sound). Although alliteration may be used in excess for impact, alliteration may merely be two consecutive words with the same sound. Offer the following as examples: Two totally terrific tangerines Sally sincerely says she’s sorry. Bonnie Blue Butler
Practically perfect Allison’s apples always taste awesome! Patty wore her purple poncho.
Modeling: Read Come On, Rain, writing down examples of alliteration found within the book.
Gray clouds, bunched and bulging under a purple sky. Slick with sweat, I run back home and slip up the steps past Mamma. She is nearly senseless in the sizzling heat. Trees sway under a swollen sky.
Guided Practice: As a whole group, the class will brainstorm other alliterations that surround a theme, such as sport and games, food, candy, etc. Record the list on chart paper or on paper using the document camera. Independent Practice: The students will be given a topic from the list of alliterations generated earlier. Students will respond with a “quick write” (10-15 minutes of writing) that incorporates alliteration. This piece could be saved and possibly selected at a later date for a starter idea in process writing.
Publishing/Sharing: Students will share their writing and place it in their writer’s binder.
Tongue Twisters Objective: Students will be able to identify examples of alliteration in text and effectively utilize alliteration to enhance writing pieces.
Anticipatory Set: Prior to reading Miss Alaineus, define alliteration as two or more words that have the same beginning sound. Two totally terrific tangerines Sally sincerely says she’s sorry. Bonnie Blue Butler
Practically perfect Allison’s apples always taste awesome! Patty wore her purple poncho.
Modeling: Read Miss Alaineus to the students. Write examples of alliteration found within the text on the board. I have a feeling this awesome ailment will cause me great agony soon. This berserk bacteria had bulldozed me badly. I am defective and delirious, and soon I will dwindle away. Can’t you hear my gloomy groans and gruesome wails?
Guided Practice: Set up a collection of books with examples of alliteration (see mentor texts). The students will work in groups or pairs to identify and record alliteration from the books.
Independent Practice: The students will create an alliteration alphabet. Either assign a theme (colors, foods, etc.) or let students choose random alliterations. Each alliterative sentence needs to contain at least two consecutive words with the same beginning sound.
Publishing/Sharing: Each student will have an alliteration alphabet book to keep in their writer’s binder.
ALL CAPS/Onomatopoeia/Stretching W-o-r-d-s Definition: ALL CAPS - writing screams on paper for emphasis Onomatopoeia – sound effects Stretching Words – dragging out the sound of a word Mentor Text: The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel BOINK! THUMP! PLUNK. The Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen BLUB. BLUB. BLUB. So I’ll SMOOTCH! Night Noises by Mem Fox CREAK, CRACK went Lily Laceby’s knees as she got to her feet. SNICK, SNACK went the bolts on the door. A Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon “Mmmmm,” said Camilla. Bullfrog Pops by Rick Walton Bullfrog raced away. But when he looked back to see who was following him, WHAM! he ran into an apple tree. “Ohhhhh!” moaned Bullfrog. Piggie Pie by Margie Palatini THUMP-P-P! THUMP-P-P! ERRRRCH-CH!
Other Mentor Texts: Achoo! Bang! Crash! The Noisy Alphabet by Ross MacDonald Bedhead by Margie Palatini Dog Breath by Dav Pilkey Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse by Kevin Henkes Web Files by Margie Palatini When Marcus Moore Moved In by Rebecca Bond The Tide by Nick Pollard Zoom, Broom by Margie Palatini
Objective: Students will insert ALL CAPS, onomatopoeia, or stretched-d-d words into a simple paragraph. Anticipatory Set: Read Bullfrog Pops by Rick Walton. Using the document camera, note the examples of word play: onomatopoeia, ALL CAPS, and stretched-d-d words. Re-read Bullfrog Pops, but this time assign each student a page so that the student makes the sound when the page is read. Modeling: Present a paragraph void of word play. This could either be a paragraph from a book or one created by the teacher or student (see below for a possible example). Using the doc cam, read the paragraph and decide where a type of word play would work to enhance the writing. Insert ALL CAPS, onomatopoeia, or stretched-d-d words into the paragraph, explaining why this insertion improved the piece. Guided Practice: With the students, select another paragraph and add word play (being careful not to insert excessively). Re-read to make sure such insertions have not diminished the clarity of the paragraph. Be sure to caution the students that “a little goes a long way.” Independent Practice: Students refer to their writer’s binder, select one of their drafts, and reread looking for a place to insert word play. Taking a highlighter, the students highlight their insertion. Publishing/Sharing: Students share their revised pieces on the doc cam. On a second read, have the audience read the word play insertions with gusto.
Sample paragraph without word play:
The squirrels gathered on the tree branch for a meeting. Chattering wildly they were convinced that they could develop a plan to tackle the new bird feeder. Why did the new owners make the bird feeder so difficult to climb? It was in the middle of the yard, so squirrels couldn’t jump from a tree to the bird feeder. Last week, one of the squirrels had tried to do just that and slid slowly off the aluminum shield that covered the top of the feeder. What a racket. His claws sounded like nails on a chalkboard. As they continued to discuss their predicament, the back door crashed open and Wolf, the family dog, came tearing out of the house. 63
I've Got That... Boom, Boom, Pow Objective: Students will identify sound or motion words (onomatopoeia words) within a text and incorporate these words in their daily writing activities. Anticipatory Set: Bring in a variety of household items that make noise (alarm clock, blender, telephone, pager, electric toothbrush, vacuum cleaner, toaster, bell, toy car, etc.). The student will be given a household item and asked to orally make the sound the item makes and then write the word of the sound. If these props are unavailable, the teacher could retrieve these items from the internet for the students to see and hear (www.findsounds.com). alarm clock- beep, beep, beep clock- tick-tock, tick-tock electric toothbrush – buzz, buzz, buzz telephone- ring, ring, ring toy car- vroom, vroom Modeling: Read the poem, Noises by Danielle Caryl. Next, display the poem on the document camera, board, or chart paper. Highlight the onomatopoeia in the poem and underline the object the sound represents.
NOISES The click of the clock, the creak of the stair, The squeak of a mouse and the swoosh of air. The groan of the house as it settles below, And outside the window, the patter of snow. The scruff of the dog’s paws below where I rest, The rattle of the window that seems to face West. The jingle of bells from a wind chime next door The unearthly sounds of a truly loud snore. The crunching of snow under an animal’s feet, The honk of a horn from right down the street. So many noises I just want to weep, Is it too much to ask for some sleep?
Highlight- click; Underline- clock Highlight- creak; Underline- stair Highlight- squeak; Underline- mouse Highlight- swoosh; Underline- air 64
Guided Practice: Provide a variety of mentor texts for the students to read in pairs. Each pair of students folds a piece of paper in half (hot dog style). The students label the left side of the paper Onomatopoeia Words and the right side Object. As the students read the provided texts, they will identify the onomatopoeia words and write them down on the left side of the paper. On the right side of the paper, they will record the object that matches the sound.
Independent Practice: Share slogans or jingles from famous products that use onomatopoeia. Rice Krispie Cereal- “Snap, Crackle, Pop” Alka-Seltzer- “Plop, plop, fizz, fizz…oh what a relief it is!” Next, list products the students may use to create their own slogan or jingle. The students will create a slogan or jingle that includes at least one example of onomatopoeia. The students will write and decorate their slogans on a piece of construction paper or by using the computer.
Publishing/Sharing: The students’ slogans will be shared orally, on a bulletin board, or through use of technology (video, commercial, etc.).
Sandcastle Writing Objective: Students will use stretching words, ALL CAPS, and onomatopoeia to enhance their writing. Anticipatory Set: The students will make permanent sandcastles. Making the Sandcastles: One week or so prior to the activity, send home the parent letter requesting donations/volunteers (follows lesson). Materials: • • • • • • • • • •
6 cups of sand ("play sand" from the hardware store works if you don't have "beach sand") 3 cups of cornstarch 3 cups of water Non-stick spray Paper- to put the mixture on to cool Decorations – glitter, buttons, beads, seashells, sequins Small sandcastle molds Large pot (Caution – it will get scratched, so use an old pot) Hot Plate Wooden spoon
Yields: 4 - 5 small sandcastles Procedure: 1. Bring the water to a boil. 2. Mix sand and cornstarch together in a bowl- add to boiling water. 3. STIR! STIR! STIR! The mixture will eventually become the consistency of cookie dough. The key is not to let it burn on the bottom, keep turning it over. 4. When it looks like cookie dough, turn it out onto the paper. 5. Spray the mold with non-stick spray and pack the mixture tightly into the mold. 6. Turn the mold over onto the paper plate and BANG it down. The sandcastle should slide out and remain intact. If the mixture is too mushy- cook a bit longer or reduce the amount of water. **The smaller the mold, the better it will turn out, and the less sand/stirring you will have to do. 7. Decorate immediately. The craft pieces will stick to the wet sandcastle without glue. Modeling: Use the mentor texts to show examples of ALL CAPS, onomatopoeia, and stretched w-o-r-d-s. Guided Practice: Brainstorm a list of words (ALL CAPS, onomatopoeia, stretched words) that might be used at the beach. 66
Independent Practice: The students will write to the following prompt and include word play where applicable: You have just built a sandcastle on the beach. Suddenly, you hear voices coming from the sandcastle! Think about what happens next. Now, write a story telling the reader about the time you heard voices coming from your sandcastle. Remember when writing to a prompt, first use a graphic organizer to organize and plan your story. Publishing/Sharing: The students will display their final revised/edited draft and decorated sandcastle. This is a fun activity to do prior to open house or other parent night.
Dear Fourth Grade Family, Your fourth-grader will be participating in a fun project that incorporates art and writing. The week of ___________________, we will be making permanent sandcastles. Who hasn’t created a beautiful castle at the beach and wished they could take it home? We’re going to show the students that through Science, combining sand and water with just one other ingredient, sandcastles last forever. Once we have created our sandcastles we will be writing a story to go along with it. We will need just a few things from you. First, if a few families would donate play sand that would be GREAT! You can purchase it at any garden center. We would also like to decorate our castles, so donations of old buttons, seashells, glitter and sequins would be nice. Additionally, we would appreciate the donation of your time. This is a labor-intensive project and the more helping hands we have the better! Your child’s writing time is at the bottom of this letter. Please check if you are able to volunteer and return the bottom portion. Thanks so much for your help and participation in this project. At open house on ________________________ you will be able to come and observe our completed sandcastles! See you then! (teacher’s name)_______________________________________________________________________ (school name)__________________________________________________________________________ (phone number)________________________________________________________________________
__________ I will be able to come help make sandcastles at ___________ on _______________. (time) (date) __________ I cannot help at this time. ______________________________________ Student’s Name
_____________________________________________ Volunteer’s Name
Nifty Names Definition: Names given to characters that relate to their job and/or personality and add pizzazz to writing. Mentor Text: The Bad Case of the Stripes by David Shannon Dr. Bumble- confused physician Mrs. Cream- mother of a girl who has skin problems Mr. Harms- Principal that kept Camilla from attending school Dr. Sponge- a specialist Dr. Gourd/Dr. Mellon- scientists that didn’t have a clue about Camilla’s problem
The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel “Oh no, it’s Big Bark!” “Big Mouth is more like it.” “He’s the meanest dog around.” But before anyone could move, Little Pip Squeak raced past Big Bark, reached out, and poked the big round thing. How I Became a Pirate by Melinda Long “Well , Jeremy Jacob,” he said, “you’re lookin’ at Braid Beard and his crew. We’ve been needin’ a digger like yourself. We’ve a chest of treasure to bury.”
Other Mentor Texts: Skippy Jon Jones by Judy Schachner
Nifty Names Dr. Cure
Objective: Students will identify Nifty Names in text that relate to a character’s job or personality traits. The students will create Nifty Names for a character that they develop. Anticipatory Set: Discuss the significance of using Nifty Names to add pizzazz to writing. Explain that the Nifty Name must correspond with the character’s career or personality traits. Read A Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon. Modeling: Display the names and personality traits of each character from A Bad Case of Stripes. Discuss why the author might have chosen particular names for some of the specific characters. Suggest other Nifty Names that the author may have used for the same character. For example, Mrs. Cream could have been called Mrs. Derma or Dr. Bumble might have been called Dr. Clueless. Guided Practice: Ask the students to brainstorm a list of careers of which they are familiar. Record all of the careers on the board. Next, “think aloud” some Nifty Names for characters that could correspond to that career. The students will have the opportunity to add Nifty Names of their choice for each career as well. Finally, record a list of various personality traits. The class will work to create Nifty Names of characters to match the listed personality traits. Examples: Bus Driver- Mr. Wheels, Custodian- Mr. Clean, Teacher- Mrs. Smarty Independent Practice: Provide all of the students with templates from the Ellison machine of a boy or girl. The students will create a Nifty Name for their character. Then, the students will dress and decorate the character to fit their Nifty Name. Finally, the students will write a detailed paragraph describing what their character looks and acts like. If applicable, the student will describe the character’s job. Publishing/Sharing: The student’s character can be glued to a piece of construction paper with the Nifty Name on the top of the page and the detailed paragraph underneath the character.
What’s In A Name? Using Personality Traits for Nifty Names
Objective: Students will identify Nifty Names in text that relate to a character’s personality trait and incorporate these techniques into their writing. Anticipatory Set: Read The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel, discussing how the character names relate to the character’s personality. Modeling: Give an example of a character with a specific personality trait and a Nifty Name that would correlate with that character. The student should understand how the Nifty Name can correlate with the character’s personality trait. “Oh no, it’s Big Bark!” “Big Mouth is more like it. He is the meanest dog around.” But before anyone could move, Little Pip Squeak raced past Big Bark, reached out and poked the round thing.
Guided Practice: Display a list of character traits, either searching the web or from the specific web site: http://cte.jhu.edu/techacademy/web/2000/kochan/charactertraits.html In groups or pairs, the students will create Nifty Names for characters based on the character traits that they have been given.
Independent Practice: The students will create an illustration of their Nifty Name character for display on a bulletin board. The students can also pull from a previous writing piece and add Nifty Names to the characters in their writing piece to enhance their writing.
Publishing/Sharing: Students will display their Nifty Name character illustrations on a bulletin board and share their revised writing pieces with the class.
Book Title: Hook
Dazzling Color Words
Games Outside Games Duck, Duck, Duck …Target Skill •
• • • •
This game is played just like duck-duck goose. When a child is picked, the “ducker” will say, “Duck-duck-duck-onomatopoeia!” Then the “goose” will have to chase the “duck” around, saying an onomatopoeia word as he/she runs around the circle and back to his/her original spot. If you are using target skills such as color words, the ducker will say, “Duck, duck, duck, purple.” Then the “goose” will have to say a juicy color word for the color purple (lavender, lilac). If you are using the target skill sensory words- the “ducker” will say, “Duck, duck, duck, (smell, see, hear, feel, or taste).” The goose will have to say a sensory word for the sense that the ducker called out (taste – salty), (feel – smooth), (smell- smoky). If you are using the target skill specific emotion words, the ducker will say, “Duck, duck, duck, (sad, mad, happy, etc.).” The goose will have to say a specific emotion word to replace the emotion word (sad- melancholy, unhappy, mournful). If you are using the target skill strong verbs- the ducker will say, “Duck, duck, duck, (walk, said, ate, ran, etc.).” The goose will have to say a strong verb to replace the weak verb (walk-perambulated, said-whispered, ate-devoured).
Target Skill Tag
This game is played like the original version of TV tag. One person is the “tagger” or “it” and the other students run in a specific area trying to avoid being tagged. The “tagger” gets to pick the Target Skill. The “tagger” will call out a Target Skill of their choice (for example- color words). As the “tagger” runs around trying to tag the other students, the other students must kneel down and shout out an example of that Target Skill before being tagged by the “tagger.” For example, if the tagger is close to another student and the target skill is color words, the student about to be tagged must quickly kneel down and shout out a color word (lavender, emerald, ruby) before the “tagger” tags him/her. If the student cannot think of a color word or gets tagged before kneeling down and shouting out a color word, then that student is now “it” or the “tagger.” Bowling for Target Skills This game can be adapted to fit any specific skill’s focus. As many bowling pins as needed may be set up. The teacher writes basic color words on index cards and tapes them to the pins. Each student will roll the ball once trying to knock down as many pins as possible. For every pin the student knocks down, he/she will have to create a juicy color word to replace the basic color word. This same concept may be used for vivid verbs, specific emotion words, specificity, mature words, and sensory words. 73
Onomatopoeia Balloon Pop Each student will think of an onomatopoeia word and write it on a small post-it note or small piece of paper. (It would be best if each student wrote down a different word.) Fold the post-it note in half. Give each student a balloon and have the students put their post-it note inside the balloons. Blow up the balloons. Have all of the students trade their balloons with another classmate a few times to ensure that they do not end up with their original balloon. All of the students will go outside while carefully holding their balloon. The students will line up in a straight, single file line facing a chair that is placed approximately 50 feet away. Each student will take turns running with the balloon in their hand towards the chair. As the student approaches the chair, he/she will place the balloon on the chair and sit/bounce on it until it pops. The student will open up the post-it note and read it to the class. The student will then sit behind the chair and the next student in line will go. The game will end once everyone has had a turn. Immediately following the game, the students will return to the classroom and either orally put their onomatopoeia word in a sentence or write it in a sentence to share aloud or display in the classroom.
Target Skill Relay Race The teacher will have two brown paper grocery bags filled with index cards that have Target Skill categories listed on them. The teacher may decide which Target Skill categories to include in the bags, but both bags have to be the same and there should be enough cards for every player . The students will divide into two teams. The teams will line up (in 2 separate lines) facing each of the brown paper bags which will be placed approximately 40 feet away. The first player of each team will run to the bag when the teacher gives the signal (blows a whistle, says, “Ready, set, go”, etc.). The teacher will be standing behind the two paper bags. Once the players reach the team’s bag, they will pull an index card from the bag and read the Target Skill out loud. Then the player will give an example of the Target Skill. If the answer is correct, the team receives a point. The player runs back to the next player in line, tags his/her hand, and then it is that player’s turn. You may end the game once every player has had a turn and determine the winning team by which team has the most points.
Consider these outdoor games when planning the 30 minutes of required outdoor physical activity.
Inside Games Color Words War If desired, the teacher may purchase two different types of armor (bronze and silver) from the local Dollar Store. The class will be divided into two teams (the bronze team and the silver team). The teams will face one another in a straight, single line fashion. The first player in line from both sides will face off. The first player in each line will wear the armor while competing. The teacher will pick a specific Target Skill and announce it to the class. For the first trial, determine a fair way to decide which team goes first (flipping a coin, pick a # between 1-10, etc.). As soon as the teacher announces the target skill (example: color words for blue), the first player in line says a more dazzling color word for the basic color word announced (sapphire). Then the first player from the opponent’s team says a different dazzling color word for the basic color word announced (cobalt). The war continues until one of the players cannot think of a dazzling color word. The other team gets the point and the two first players move to the back of the line and the second players from each side move to the front of the line. The team that received the winning point gets to choose the next color word for the next round. This same concept may be used for vivid verbs, specific emotion words, specificity, mature words, and sensory words.
Silent Speedball This game requires a soft, sponge-type ball or small stuffed animal to toss around the room. The students are instructed that there is no talking unless they have the ball. They are also instructed that if they throw the ball “wild” or too aggressively, they will have to sit out for this round. The teacher then gives a target skill and tosses the ball to a student. That student says an example of the target skill and gently tosses the ball to another student. That student says an example of the target skill and gently tosses the ball, and so on. If at any point a student drops the ball, talks out of turn, throws the ball wild, or cannot think of an example to say, they are then “out” and have to wait until the next round. • • • •
Vivid color words- ruby, chartreuse, lavender Onomatopoeia- bang, slurp, wah-boom Proper nouns- Ford, Sketchers, Disneyland Verbs- dashed, ventured, perused
Eraser Slide Divide the class into two teams. Assign a team leader for each team (this is a perfect opportunity to announce in the morning that you will be observing the class for the rest of the day looking for those individuals that have leadership skills). The teacher clears the chalkboard or white board and sections it off by writing 0, 5, 10, 15, 20 across the board with lines drawn to indicate the boundaries for each score point. For this game, the chalkboard or white board must have a tray the length of the board in order to slide an eraser.
With the teams sitting in a circle of chairs on either end of the room, the teacher begins with Team A’s captain and asks a writing question. The captain has one minute to respond and may ask his team for help with the answer. When the captain feels confident with the response, the captain stands and gives the answer. The answer he/she gives does not necessarily represent the group’s response. In other words if the captain feels the group is off the mark, he/she may decide to choose a response of his/her own. The respondent has 1 minute to answer. If the answer is correct, the person representing the group (first one called is the captain) comes to the chalkboard and slides the eraser. The team scores the number of points that the eraser lands within. If the eraser lands on the line separating the numbers, the person sliding the eraser gets a “do-over.” If the eraser falls to the floor, the person gets a “do-over.” There can only be two do-overs total for each person standing at the board and the resulting score would be 0. If the answer is incorrect when the person stands to answer, that person sits down and no opportunity to slide the eraser is given. Although the captains start the process by answering first, every student is given a chance to answer moving in a clock-wise rotation. If the team answers incorrectly, the same question is given to the opposing team, so it would behoove all participants to whisper as they consult and discuss possible answers.
Lightning Round: Once all questions have been asked, the teacher asks the same questions again, but in a lightning round situation. Each standing student only has 10 seconds to answer the question, so listening to the initial round becomes paramount. The game is over when the writing class is over. Scores are tallied.
Gimmicks Food for Thought: •
Pop Rocks- (teacher discretion) sizzling vocabulary, sizzling verbs, or onomatopoeia “pop”
Gummy Bears or Teddy Grams– “beary” good writing
Laffy Taffy or Snickers- humorous piece or section
Bubble Gum- (teacher discretion) onomatopoeia “pop” or “Your writing blew me away!”
Wax Lips- Voice
100 Grand Bar- million dollar words
Good and Plenty- The piece was “just right”. It was good and had plenty of details or target skills in it.
Now and Later- circular endings
Skittles- color words (give them a few- one of each color)
Smarties- (teacher discretion)- mature vocabulary
Sour Heads- sensory words
Red Hots- Your writing is red hot!
Trinkets and Treasures: Most of these items can be worn during your writing time and collected to be used again. •
Bubbles or balloons-“You’re writing blew me away!”
Tiaras and crowns- Writing King or Queen of the Day
Paper money or plastic dollar sign rings- million dollar words
Chattering wind up teeth- voice
Wand- Walk around the room and spread some of that magic!
Plastic hook- beginnings (hooks)
Plastic grabber tool or mini sticky hands- grabber beginnings
Rubber band- stretching your words
String- your beginning and ending tie together
Rainbow stickers – color words
Happy face stickers- emotion words
Noise makers- onomatopoeia
Clapper hands- used to applaud someone after sharing a piece
Kaleidoscope – colors 77
A Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon
Owl Moon by Jane Yolen
All the Places to Love by Patricia
Piggie Pie by Margie Palatini
Teacher Appreciation Day by Lynn Plourde
Amber on the Mountain by Tony Johnston
The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni
Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish
Bat Loves the Night by Nicola Davis
The Color of Us by Karen Katz
Bedhead by Margie Palatini
The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses by Paul
Bullfrog Pops by Rick Walton
Color Me a Rhyme by Jane Yolen
The Great Fuzz Frenzy by Janet Stevens and
Come On, Rain by Karen Hesse
Susan Stevens Crummel
Dumpy LaRue by Elizabeth Winthrop
The Hickory Chair by Lisa Rowe
Enemy Pie by Derek Munson
The Lotus Seed by Sherry Garland
Fancy Nancy by Jane O’Connor and Robin
The Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen
The Old Woman Who Named Things by
How I Became a Pirate by David Shannon
I Love You the Purplest by Barbara M.
Through Grandpa’s Eyes by Patricia
John Henry by Julius Lester
Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco
Miss Alaineus by Debra Frasier
Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg
More Parts by Tedd Arnold
Under the Quilt of Night by Deborah
My Mama Had a Dancing Heart by Libba
Hopkinson and James E. Ransome
Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel
My Ol’ Man by Patricia Polacco
Night Noises by Mem Fox
Who Let the Cat Out of the Bag? By 4th
Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by
Grade Students of Newcastle Avenue Elem