Demo Lesson- Rising 4th- Writing

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by giraffe326, Aug 19, 2013.

  1. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Aug 19, 2013

    I have to do a 20 minute demo lesson. Writing- my worst subject! Uggh!

    These are rising fourth graders attending summer school. I can teach a third or fourth grade writing lesson since they are behind.

    Any suggestions?

    I initially though figurative language, but those are language standards and not writing standards.

    I only have 20 minutes, so I was thinking maybe something with CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.3.1c Use linking words and phrases (e.g., because, therefore, since, for example) to connect opinion and reasons., but I don't have any ideas as to how to teach it.

    :help:
     
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  3. doodle70

    doodle70 Companion

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    Descriptive writing? Using descriptive words to make writing more interesting.

    We wrote about how to eat an Oreo cookie. Then we added descriptive words to make it more interesting. You could have a pre-written description and have students add words that make it a better descriptive piece. Maybe too long. :confused:
     
  4. breezymarie07

    breezymarie07 Companion

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    When in doubt, Haiku. I did a descriptive/riddle haiku for middle school during my third semester and the kids loved it. Then for summer school (taught going into 5/6), I ended about 20 minutes early, so I did an impromptu lesson on Haiku. I wrote one out for summer and they had to guess the season. Then, they had to make their own riddle haiku: about a season, TV show, movie, etc.

    One student wrote:
    Yellow, funny square
    Under sea in pineapple
    Friend is pink starfish

    They really got into it and then I had them all share and they had to guess what their Haiku was about. Not sure if that'd be of interest, but Haiku is literally my go-to. My friend/fieldwork partner from that semester send Haiku to each other all the time now!:)
     
  5. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    I thought about poetry, but I can't find poetry anywhere in the writing standards :(
     
  6. breezymarie07

    breezymarie07 Companion

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    Hmm...I just looked at my app - you could maybe swing it as 4.W.5 - "develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, and editing". They need to plan their poem, then revise (some students struggle with the 5-7-5 and syllables), edit. Kind of loose, but, an option.
     
  7. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    Aug 19, 2013

    Giraffe,

    I recommend using transition words. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.4.3c Use a variety of transitional words and phrases to manage the sequence of events.

    Sequencing events using first, next, then, last or finally is a lesson that could be adequately taught in 20 minutes.

    Good luck, no matter what topic you choose!
     
  8. breezymarie07

    breezymarie07 Companion

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    :thumb: That's a great idea, as well!!!
     
  9. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    Sticking with the standard you selected, what about persuasive writing? List two items you are considering buying (iPad vs. Kindle), and have them give you reasons why you should buy it. Then model writing sentences using the words you want to focus on (because, for example, etc). For independent practice, have them write a few sentences (or paragraph) telling you which item you should purchase and why. For your closing, have one or two read the paragraph. I used to introduce persuasive writing this way with 5th graders and it always went over well. Good luck!
     
  10. Pisces_Fish

    Pisces_Fish Fanatic

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  11. curiouslystrong

    curiouslystrong Companion

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    Do you know if the district is utilizing a particular writing program? I have some experience with Lucy Calkins (of whom I am not really a fan, but that is neither here nor there); she's big on getting students to hone in on "small moment" narrative topics (rather than writing about "big ideas" - i.e. write a richly detailed account of climbing a mountain instead of giving a laundry-list day-by-day rattling off of the events of your family's week-long camping trip). My students had a lot of trouble figuring out how to narrow their focus and identify vivid supporting details. Some good 20ish-minute lessons we did had*to do with being able to evaluate scenarios & determine if they were big ideas or small moments. We also did a lesson where students picked a small moment, wrote a short paragraph about it, drew a picture of their small moment, identified specific details in their drawings, and then used that to revise/rewrite their paragraph. The improvements were truly remarkable! Calkins also has this watermelon/seed metaphor that might work well for that age group...I'm sure it could be looked up online, if you're interested. You could probably tie in a standard for narrative writing.
     
  12. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    I asked. She mentioned something I am not familiar with (started with an F) and that some teachers use Lucy Calkins. I've used Calkins for years and I hate it :blush:
    I've considered using a lesson from her, but if the kids aren't all familiar with it, it would bomb. And they'll be bored if they do know. Uggh.
     
  13. RadiantBerg

    RadiantBerg Cohort

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    How about having them describe the best food they ever had, like they do on Food Network?
     
  14. curiouslystrong

    curiouslystrong Companion

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    Yeah, I hated Calkins, too. I tried to hit on some of the core concepts she advocated (like the big ideas vs. small moments thing) without actually doing anything she specifically suggested. And I tried to avoid making my students write for extended blocks of time as much as possible...ughhhh

    Was the other program Four Square Writing Method, by any chance? I'm not familiar with it, but maybe you could find some ideas for it online?

    Good luck with your demo!
     
  15. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Aug 19, 2013

    Bear in mind that writing and reading are opposite sides of the same coin. You could find a short procedural text, such as a recipe or something from the school handbook, or write your own: it should contain transition words that indicate sequence, and it needn't be more than a handful of sentences. Make sure you have this text in whatever form you need it to share with the students. Copy it and strip out the transition words, changing the verb forms if necessary, and make sure you've got a copy of the result in a shareable form.

    To start your lesson, share the stripped version with the students: get them thinking about what it means and whether it's easy or hard to figure out what the author wanted one to do when. This could be groupwork or whole class. Then show them the version that includes the transition words, and get them thinking about how much more quickly and easily they can sort out the sequence. Have them help you pick out the transition indicators, list them, and get a sense of what each does; you could certainly also solicit additional items for the list.

    Then you could have them practice writing with their transition indicators by composing a short paragraph (as pairwork or individual work) in which they write up a short, familiar procedure from the classroom such as getting a pencil sharpened (you collectively could brainstorm the steps first, and I'd recommend including the need to get permission (if called for) and leave one's seat).
     
  16. schoolteacher

    schoolteacher Habitué

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    Aug 19, 2013

    Are you familiar with four square graphic organizer for writing? You could model something like My summer was interesting because.... with each square telling why.

    Here are some examples:

    http://jayniemoon.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2010-10-28T21:00:00-07:00&max-results=20
     
  17. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Nope. Not Four Square. It was unusual- like it is a last name.
     
  18. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Thanks for all the ideas and links :)
     
  19. curiouslystrong

    curiouslystrong Companion

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    Ralph Fletcher?
     
  20. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    Aug 20, 2013

    Fountas and Pinnell?

    And I like the suggested sequence word lesson. Our writing program stinks so I wish I could give you a great lesson, but I haven't had a great writing lesson, ever. We're switching programs this year. The fact that we only had ONE 5th grader (out of 110) get Advanced on the writing PSSA last year (only given in 5th at the elementary school level) is rather indicative of the horrible program we've been following. We had several get Advanced on the reading and math, so students are certainly capable of Advanced results. Though I think the lack of time for writing has been as much of an issue and now we're finally getting 30 min a day for it so that will surely help as well.

    But I digress.... best of luck to you with whatever you decide to do :).

    Oh, and in your lesson plan I'd suggest including follow up assignments (like a hw assignment related to the lesson) as well as differentiated assignments you would include if it were your own class and you were more familiar with the students/had more time.
     
  21. Rainbowbird

    Rainbowbird Groupie

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    Aug 20, 2013

    This is great news! Are you familiar with Empowering Writers? They have a ton of great quick-write activities for teaching story structure, elaboration, etc.
     

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