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First Grade Beginning of Year Writing Unit for CLASSROOM or DISTANCE LEARNING

Grade Levels
1st, Homeschool
Formats Included
  • Zip
  • Google Apps™
300 pages
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Includes Google Apps™
The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).

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  1. This completely done-for-you writing curriculum includes a year's worth of first-grade writing lessons and activities for teaching opinion writing, informational writing, personal narrative writing, and beginning-of-the-year writing skills in first grade. With this resource, we literally take your h
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We are talking NO PREP and no more than 5 minutes of planning a day!

Click Here to read our blog article on this amazing resource!

This Common Core Standards Aligned writing curriculum is the perfect way to teach first graders all the foundational skills they need before heading into opinion, narrative, and informational writing.

All too often we skip building important foundational skills before jumping into writing. Unfortunately, this can lead to frustration for students and teachers.

Our 1st grade writing unit is all about building a solid foundation. By the end of this unit your students will be writing strong sentences that are meaningful and interesting.

Just say no to:

· Sentences without spaces between words

· missing capitals

· sentence fragments

· Run-on sentences

· missing end punctuation, wrong punctuation, or no punctuation

· lack of commas in a series

· and most importantly…boring sentences

And say yes to

8 Weeks of fun and engaging explicit writing lessons geared toward the beginning of first grade to ensure success for all learners. Your writers will learn to:

· create detailed drawings using basic shapes and lines

· label drawings using best-guess spelling

· write a complete sentence with a subject and predicate

· correctly use capitals, spaces between words, and punctuation

· write a sentence using a sentence stem

· write telling, asking, and exclamatory sentences

· write a list

· list 3 or more things in a sentence using commas

· write to respond to questions

· write stronger sentences by including adjectives, adverbs, who, what, where, when or why

· write stronger sentences after receiving feedback from teacher and peers

· write more than one sentence on a topic

After this writing unit students will be able to rock and roll with opinion, narrative, and informative writing!



40 DIGITAL LESSON PLANS – 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:

· 40 “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, build background information as well as vocabulary

· Watch Me Slides – For the teacher to show the day’s objective through think aloud and modeling. This is oftentimes interactive to keep student engagement high.

· Our Turn Slides – For students to practice the new skill learned with you.

· Your Turn Slides – For students to independently practice the skill learned each day.

40 STUDENT WRITING PAGES – After each writing skill has been explicitly taught and practiced, students are held responsible for their learning by engaging in a daily writing assignment aligned to the days learning target.

OBSERVATION CHECKLISTS – Great for formative assessment! As you walk around and observe students, record your findings. This easy to use checklist helps you remember who has learned the targeted standard taught, and who needs extra help. This is great to refer to when planning for parent-teacher conferences.

END OF UNIT ASSESSMENT – To use as a summative assessment of the skills taught.


· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 1 – Draw detailed pictures using shapes & lines

· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 2 – Label pictures using best guess spelling

· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 3 – Write complete sentences

· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 4 – Write complete sentences & lists

· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 5 – Write stronger sentences

· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 6 – Write more than one sentence on a topic

· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 7 – Write more than one sentence to answer a question

· WRITING FOCUS WEEK 8 – Respond to questions to strengthen writing



Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful resource! According to our 1st grade lesson plans, our students were supposed to start the year off in writing by writing narratives. There was no way my students were ready for that, as many of them were still struggling to write a complete sentence! Your approach of beginning writing with drawing pictures, then labeling them, then moving on to completing sentence stems and writing about a picture prompt has helped tremendously! -Darla

I love this resource! The attention to detail is incredible. There truly is no prep, just load the power point and print the work sheets (I do one week booklets at a time so I don't have to copy everyday). I would love to see more units to follow this one.

This is an amazing resource that will help my students learn critical writing skills right from the start. I love how easy it is to use and the consistent layout will help students focus on the lesson and skills being taught. Excited to use this!! -Brianne



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? Student writing like we’ve never seen. This method truly works!



· The entry point for this unit is assessable to all learners.

· Lessons are carefully and thoughtfully scaffolded, ensuring success for all learners.

· Our I Do, We Do, You Do format sets your first-grade writers up for success.

· At completion of this unit, your students will be able to confidently tackle opinion, narrative, and informative writing with ease.



· 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 take students at other grade levels back to the basics and build a strong writing foundation.



Is this resource aligned to Common Core?

Yes! We built this whole resource around the Common Core State Standards.

Are the students required to write each day?

Yes! After we discuss, model, practice skills; students are then ask to show understanding by engaging in a writing task independently.

Does this follow a Writers’ Workshop model?

No. Writers’ Workshop worked great for us in second grade, but not so much in first. Students are explicitly taught a writing skill each day, then they practice the skill taught.

Can this be used with Google Slides?

Technically, yes. Because the digital lessons are made in PowerPoint, they can easily be converted to Google Slides and lesson slides can be pushed out to students. However, we don't feel this is the best way to utilize this resource. (See next section for further clarification.) Also, the individual student pages are not compatible with Google.

How can I use this resource for Distance Learning.

If you are engaging in Distance Learning, we highly recommend creating videos for your students using something like ScreenCastify or use an online meeting format such as Zoom. The lessons need to be taught prior to students engaging in the writing activities. In regard to the student writing pages, just print out the unit and give to parents. If you are unable to do so, almost all activities can be done in a notebook on plain paper.



Click HERE to check out our Informational, Opinion, and Yearlong BUNDLE Curriculums.

Total Pages
300 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
2 months
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Spell untaught words phonetically, drawing on phonemic awareness and spelling conventions.
Use conventional spelling for words with common spelling patterns and for frequently occurring irregular words.
Use commas in dates and to separate single words in a series.
Use end punctuation for sentences.
Capitalize dates and names of people.


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