FIRST GRADE EXPLICIT OPINION WRITING CURRICULUM
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Are you ready to get stellar results through an explicit and systematic approach to writing instruction? This 1st-grade structured, standards-aligned writing unit contains all the writing lessons, prompts, and activities you'll need to effectively teach opinion writing.
With this curriculum, we literally take your hand and walk you through, step-by-step, teaching writing every day of the year.
Teaching writing will seriously become the easiest, and most joyful, part of your day.
So say goodbye to teacher overwhelm and hello to your newfound confidence as an amazing teacher of writing.
Here comes some exciting news... this unit has a UNIQUE FEATURE that no other opinion writing program we've ever seen has. It brings fun, engaging topics and experiences to your students, instead of assuming all students have the background needed to write an opinion. You'll see these interactive experiences during the last half of the unit. Students can't wait to independently write opinions about them.
WHAT’S INCLUDED IN THIS RESOURCE?
– No need to search for your lesson plans or spend an enormous amount of time reading them each day. We have them right on the slides - making your teaching life stress-free.
Digital Lessons Include:
- “I Will” Statements – To keep students laser-focused on the objective of the day. We use “I will” statements instead of “I can” statements as they hold the students more accountable
- Writing Chats – To introduce topics and build background information and vocabulary
- Watch Me Slides – For the teacher to show the objective through thinking aloud and modeling. This is oftentimes interactive to keep student engagement high.
- Our Turn Slides – For students to practice the new skill with you.
- Your Turn Slides – For students to independently practice the skill learned.
– After each writing skill has been explicitly taught and practiced, students are held responsible for their learning by engaging in a writing assignment aligned to the day's learning target.
– Great for formative assessment! As you walk around and observe students, record your findings. This easy-to-use checklist helps you remember who is meeting targeted standards and who needs extra help. This is a helpful tool to refer to when planning for parent-teacher conferences.
– This handy resource is perfect for grading opinion papers and discussing goals and progress with students and parents.
- Set of 15 opinion writing posters to display in your classroom.
HERE IS A GLIMPSE OF THE FOCUS FOR EACH WEEK:
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 1 – Distinguish fact from opinion
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 2 – Write an opinion statement and reasons for it
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 3 – Use opinion sentence starters
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 4 – Write an opinion paper with a closing sentence
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 5 – Practice opinion writing independently (exposure to linking words)
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 6 – Practice opinion writing independently
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 7 – Practice opinion writing independently
· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 8 – Practice opinion writing independently
WHY EXPLICIT INSTRUCTION FOR WRITING?
It’s simple… IT WORKS!
Explicit instruction (also called direct instruction) works for all writers…not just the stronger ones. It’s a strategy that allows teachers to scaffold learning by giving structured, sequenced lessons targeting specific skills or standards. It’s teacher-led with a gradual release of responsibility to students. This method truly allows all students to succeed.
If you are thinking, that doesn’t sound like Writer’s Workshop, you’re right. It’s not. Years ago, we implemented Writer’s Workshop in our classrooms, but it didn’t work for us… or our students.
The biggest problem was that it was very difficult to manage and keep students on track. It was also a planning nightmare trying to find mini-lessons to match our students’ diverse needs. And to make matters worse, when we gave mini-lessons students didn’t necessarily practice the targeted skill because they were at a different stage of the writing process.
We were disappointed, frustrated and knew we had to do something different.
We decided to put structure and intentionality into our teaching. We clearly state what students will be working on, give thoughtful instruction through modeling and discussion, and provide time to practice as we observe and guide. It is so simple to manage and gives students the support they need. The result? Students are now writing better than we've ever seen! This method truly works!
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF USING THIS WRITING RESOURCE?
❤️ The entry point for this unit is assessable to all learners.
❤️ All lessons are carefully and thoughtfully scaffolded, ensuring success for all.
❤️ The Watch Me, Our Turn, Your Turn format sets your first-grade writers up for success.
❤️ Your students will be highly engaged and motivated to write.
❤️ At the completion of this unit, your students will be confidently writing opinion papers with ease.
WHO IS THE RESOURCE FOR?
- First-grade teachers looking for a strong, yet easy to implement, writing curriculum that is aligned to the Common Core State Standards and fun for kids.
- Special Education Teachers who need to teach students the basics of opinion writing using a direct instruction approach.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do students complete a writing assignment each day?
Students engage in a writing activity thirty-seven of the forty days to show understanding of the skills taught. The other three days are devoted to whole-group learning experiences that either teach a skill or prepare students to write the next day.
Does this follow a Writers’ Workshop model?
No. Students are explicitly taught a writing skill each day, then they practice the skill taught.
Can this be used with Google Slides?
Yes! We have included a link to a Google Slides version in this resource.
WHAT TEACHERS LIKE YOU ARE SAYING:
I am SO GLAD that I purchased this writing unit for my firsties. It is visual, easy to follow, and developmentally appropriate for them. They are always engaged during writing and I love that it provides the perfect amount of guided and independent practice. I'm excited to purchase more units in the future :) - Krystina
My students love these writing units! They are so easy to use and packed full of content. I love the way it is laid out with a mini-lesson, I do, we do, you do. This has truly transformed the way I teach writing and my students are better writers because of this resource. -Kimberly
This is one of the BEST purchases I have ever made on TPT. Thank you for this resource!!! I will be buying more from you. You have made opinion writing so easy and fun to teach! -Penni
I love how sequential and purposeful each lesson is! -Kathleen
OTHER FIRST-GRADE RESOURCES YOU MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN:
Click HERE to check out our Beginning of the Year, Informative, Personal Narrative, and Yearlong Writing Bundle Curriculums.
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Permission to copy for single classroom use only.
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Cindy & Becky
Team Primary Bliss Teaching