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This bundle includes all of the material I use to teach descriptive and narrative essays to my juniors. The bundle includes in-class activities, powerpoints, revision exercises, and prompts. For details of what is included, see below.
The goals of this unit are to:
-teach students to use concrete, specific language to convey vivid impressions
-build essays around a narrative thesis
-alter essay structure to fit their purpose
-vary sentence structure to add voice and interest
-move beyond empty language
-discover writing techniques by studying other writers
Descriptive and Narrative Writing Bundle from Lit Scholar
The following bundle includes items to create a descriptive/narrative writing unit. Although I use this material for 11th graders in a writing class, the material here can be easily adapted to a number of English classes. In fact, I use material from this unit for my AP students as well as my literature students.
This unit takes me about three weeks. However, a week of that is spent meeting with each student individually in a writing conference (the other students read during that time). I did not include a schedule because of the variability in classroom time, homework loads, and class size. However, I did include a general unit plan.
Instructional Powerpoints (available individually at Lit Scholar):
1. Avoiding Empty Words
2. Organizing the Narrative Essay
3. Periodic and Loose Sentences
These powerpoints explore sentence structure, word choice, and essay organization. Some aspects of the powerpoints are interactive, leading to discussion or brief student activities.
1. Identifying Descriptive Elements (available individually at Lit Scholar)
2. Imitation Exercise (available individually at Lit Scholar)
3. Using Strong and Specific Descriptive Language to Distinguish Photographs (available ONLY as part of the bundle!)
These activities are designed for small groups or individual work during the class period. My students have had a lot of fun with these activities. They are very hands-on and get the students writing and thinking. I like to do a lot of sharing and collaborative work with these exercises. These exercises “piggyback” off of the information covered in the powerpoints.
Revision Exercises (available ONLY as part of the bundle!)
1. Descriptive elements: adding figurative language, strong verbs, etc
2. Sentence Level Revision
These are guided revision exercises in which I have students make specific changes to their drafts. These exercises help the students think creatively as well as identify aspects of their work they can play with.
Teacher Resources (available ONLY as part of the bundle)
1. General Unit Plan
2. “Epigraph” Essay
3. Peer Review Sheet
I included these items as references for the teacher. Although narrative writing has countless prompts, I included mine as an example. I also have an open-ended peer review form and a brief unit plan.