This is How To Write In Fourth Grade, the third in a series of four writing instruction curriculums, aligned to the new Common Core Standards. It is designed to create a portfolio of structured writings, demonstrating the growth of writing skills in the three forms of writing: narrative, persuasive, and expository. Each lesson builds on the skills taught in previous lessons. Each lesson has a “how-to” format that stresses modeling as the dominant teaching method. Each year ends with portfolios of students’ work, containing multiple samples of the three types of writings. It leads to student proficiency and higher test scores. This insures an accurate assessment of the students' performance, using the new Common Core Standards.
Narrative, persuasive, and informational texts have predictable structures. As we become proficient readers, we internalize these structures. As writers, we must adhere to these forms. This predictability allows the reader to feel comfortable, and focus on the content of what is being said. If you vary too much from the predicted structure, the reader becomes uncertain, and less likely to immerse themselves, whole heartedly into the “reading experience”. They are busy figuring out your structure and can’t focus on the content of your piece. This is especially true for young readers. So, we must be sure to focus on these predictable structures when we teach the young writer. This is the underlying premise in all of the curriculums.