Memoir Vignettes: A Narrative Writing Unit (6-8)

Kasey Kiehl
Grade Levels
6th - 8th
Resource Type
Formats Included
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  • Google Apps™
50 pages
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Kasey Kiehl
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The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).

Also included in

  1. Imagine making one purchase and having your entire middle school writing curriculum DONE for you this school year. Even better? The curriculum has a laid out scope & sequence, is aligned to meet every single standard for persuasive writing, informative/explanatory writing, narrative writing, and
    Save $36.00
  2. This Writing Workshop bundle includes four writing units. The Product Review is a persuasive writing unit, the Memoir Vignettes is a narrative writing unit, the Literary Analysis is an informative/explanatory writing unit, and the Ask Anything is a research writing unit. Together, these four units c
    Save $9.60


What are memoir vignettes?

This writing unit is specifically designed to meet the standards for narrative writing (W.6.3, W.7.3, W.8.3). Memoir Vignettes are short, poetic, partial memories with rich language and sharp images. Unlike traditional memoir or personal narrative writing, memoir vignettes don’t force students to make conclusions and tell a complete story from start to finish. They are little snips of time, which is less intimidating for many students who struggle to write about themselves for a variety of reasons (lack of “important” enough memories, sad/negative memories, etc.). Students will start the unit by studying the genre of memoir vignettes through the mentor text provided. Next, brainstorming and pre-writing begin where they will get the chance to think about images and moments that stick out to them. Students will select three of these moments that have a common thread between them to take to the drafting phase. They will also write a forward to the memoir vignettes to explain the common thread that exists between the three vignettes. Revision will focus on using narrative techniques to develop experiences and using sensory language to convey experiences. Students will finish this writing unit by participating in a peer sounding board to receive feedback on their writing and editing for conventions before publishing their writing for an authentic audience.

What is included in the memoir vignettes writing unit?

  • Unit Plan: an overview of the 13 minilesson statements, each aligned to a Common Core State Standard for narrative writing, sequenced to guide students through the writing process from start to finish.
  • Detailed Minilessons: 13 fully-scripted writing minilessons for the teacher so that they can explicitly walk students through the gradual release of responsibility (minilesson statement, modeling, have-a-go, application, share) in each minilesson. The minilessons take students through each part of the writing process (genre immersion, pre-write, organize & outline, draft, revise, edit, publish & share). *Download the preview to see the specific minilessons covered throughout this unit.
  • Mentor Text: A mentor text of memoir vignettes, written by me, to reference throughout the writing process. The mentor text was written to exemplify each minilesson and be used as a tool for modeling and a reference during writing conferences/guided writing.
  • PowerPoints: Each lesson contains a presentation of the lesson with the different steps of the lesson laid out (minilesson statement, modeling, have-a-go, application, share) for a great visual throughout each minilesson to help the lessons flow. These come in PDF and in editable form.
  • Question Prompts for Writing Conferences: Question prompts specific to each minilesson to use in writing conferences and/or guided writing each day to reinforce the concept being taught are included. These questions make it seamless to hold writing conferences that will make a huge impact on students' writing.
  • Student Handouts and Reference Guides: Student materials (prewriting sheets, graphic organizers, outline, reference sheets to assist with specific minilessons, handouts with prompting questions to guide revision, etc.) needed for each minilesson are included. A student "Editing Guide" is also included to assist students during the editing phase with capitalization, spelling, homophone, punctuation, commas, and sentence types reference sheets.
  • Rubric Options: Rubrics are designed to assess the specific genre and type of writing in the writing unit. There are different rubric options included so teachers can use the rubric that works best for their purpose.
  • Grade 6 CCSS-Aligned Rubric
  • Grade 7 CCSS-Aligned Rubric
  • Grade 8 CCSS-Aligned Rubric
  • Minilesson-Based Rubric: does not mention specific CCSS standards and is based on the minilessons taught in the writing unit
  • Just Feedback Rubric: designed to get students reading and thinking about feedback.
  • Students Self-Assessment Rubric: where students assess before the teachers assess.

***All lessons, student handouts, and rubrics come in a PDF and Microsoft Word version so teachers can use the materials in a way that best suits their teaching style and students’ needs. Additionally, all presentations are included as Google Slides and all students handouts are included as Google Docs for ease of use in Google Classroom.

Looking for a year-long writing curriculum? Look no further.

There are ten writing units in total. Each persuasive, informative/explanatory, narrative, and research writing unit is designed to meet all of the standards for that genre. Each unit is designed to bring a unique spin to the overall genre of writing. Teachers can create a year-long writing curriculum based on the writing units they think will best meet the needs of their students. Teachers who teach solely writing will most likely be able to teach more writing units across the year than teachers who teach reading and writing within the same class period to students. Regardless, the writing units are purchased separately and can be put together to create a year-long curriculum covering all of the writing standards from the Common Core State Standards. Download the preview to see example scope and sequences tailored to represent different middle school teaching situations.

There are 3 purchase options for the writing units:

1. Purchase all ten units and save $36 (30% off) by purchasing the Middle School Year-Long Writing Workshop Curriculum Bundle. This bundle includes awesome extras to help manage, assess, and thrive using a Writing Workshop all year.

2. Purchase the writing units as a mini-bundle and save $9.60 (20% off). Each mini-bundle includes four writing units (1 persuasive, 1 informative/explanatory, 1 narrative, 1 research). There are three mini-bundle options, each containing a different variety of writing units. Choose the one that works best for you and your students.

-6-8 Writing Workshop Units Bundle (Option 1)

-6-8 Writing Workshop Units Bundle (Option 2)

-6-8 Writing Workshop Units Bundle (Option 3)

3. Purchase the writing units individually to meet your writing instruction needs. The 10 writing units are linked below.

-Deleted Scene-Narrative Writing

-Blog Post-Informative/Explanatory Writing

-Product Review-Persuasive Writing

-Ask Anything-Research Writing

-Narrative Nonfiction-Narrative Writing Unit

-Literary Analysis-Informative/Explanatory Writing

-Important Issue Letter-Persuasive Writing

-Memoir Vignettes-Narrative Writing

-Quote to Live By-Informative/Explanatory Writing

-Book Recommendation-Persuasive Writing

*Do you teach students how to write or tell them to write? There is a big difference between teaching and telling.

*These writing units take students through the writing process step-by-step through a series of detailed minilessons with explicit modeling examples. You can feel confident in your teaching and will love the writing engagement and results you get from students.

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Total Pages
50 pages
Answer Key
Rubric only
Teaching Duration
3 Weeks
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas efficiently as well as to interact and collaborate with others.
With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on how well purpose and audience have been addressed.
Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.


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