Which character from Greek mythology would you like to invite to dinner? Which would make the best president? Kids love writing about their favorite mythological characters! This product includes an opinion writing prompt and a persuasive writing prompt:
- Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner! (opinion writing) – Writing in first person, the student explains which character from myths would make the perfect dinner guest.
- _______ for President! (persuasive writing) – Writing in second person, the writer persuades his audience to vote for a specific god or goddess.
Created by master teacher Brenda Kovich, these lessons are classroom-tested and kid-approved. What’s special about these activities? Plenty! Graphic organizers provide strong (but simple) structural support for middle-grade writers. Kids work on specific strategies that immediately improve style and voice. Best of all, modeling sheets show them how it’s done!
- For the Teacher – Use four pages of lesson plans to guide instruction. Are you a new or inexperienced writing teacher? Have no fear! These plans and the accompanying modeling sheets will pull great writing out of your students.
- Persuasive Techniques (optional) – Explain Aristotle’s time-honored strategies for persuasion: ethos, logos, and pathos. This one-page summary shows kids how to use credibility, logic, and emotional appeal to convince their audience. They can transfer these strategies to future persuasive writing activities.
Writing Opinion Paragraphs:
- Opinion Writing Graphic Organizer – Distribute this simple planning sheet to establish strong structure for writing opinion paragraphs. Students use first person perspective to plan an opinion statement, three supportive reasons, and a conclusion.
- Examples for Modeling – To model the writing process, show your students the sample graphic organizer, related first draft and final draft.
- Guidance for Modeling – Check out this handy teacher sheet to see how adding information, varying sentences, and choosing specific words improves writing.
- Editing Checklist – Encourage kids to check their own writing, revise, ask a peer to check their work, and revise again.
- Themed Writing Paper – Create an eye-catching classroom display with your students’ work! Just copy the “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner!” themed stationery onto colored paper and hang.
- Rubric – Evaluate structure, style, voice, and mechanics.
Writing Persuasive Paragraphs:
- Persuasive Writing Graphic Organizer – Point out similarities and differences in the two forms of argumentative writing. For the persuasive paragraph, students write in second person, directing their persuasive narrative at a specific audience. They begin with an opinion and supporting reasons, but they wrap it up with a call to action.
- Examples for Modeling – Show kids how it’s done with this sample response. Once again, it’s planned all the way through (graphic organizer, first draft, and final draft).
- Guidance for Modeling – Check out explanations and examples that help students move to that polished final piece. This handy page illustrates how to add information, vary sentence structure, and improve word choice.
- Themed Writing Paper – An additional piece of mythology-themed stationery reads “______ for President!” It’s time for a second display.
- Rubric – Assess kids’ writing with this rubric, designed especially for persuasive writing.
To take a peek at one of the two writing activities, click PREVIEW.
In my fourth grade class, students first learned about characters from Greek mythology by completing Myth Character & Research Sheets. Then they wrote opinion and persuasive paragraphs. This provided a review of opinion paragraphs and an introduction to persuasive writing. From there, students began their first five-paragraph essays with Persuasive Writing: You Should Try It! They had a ball (and wrote some marvelous pieces).
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I'm committed to continual improvement. This resource was updated on April 7, 2019.