When I came up with this project my students were in serious need of some inspiration in the nonfiction writing department. They were sick of the “pick your favorite animal” and “teach me how to do something,” prompts. I noticed they were seriously wearing out all of my nonfiction books that were about various disasters. I told them to think of a disaster or dangerous situation: volcanoes, earthquakes, bears, sharks, lightning, snakes, tarantulas, the more exciting, the better. The only stipulation was that it had to be real. That was so we wouldn't have trouble making sure our facts were accurate.
They had a lot of fun doing their research because they were reading about something that was exciting to them. It was some of the best writing I got out of them all year. We printed out our final copies and made big posters with them. You could do anything with it, but I usually got writing out of my kids more easily if there was an art component when they finished the writing and it is something for my early finishers to do.
That’s it! I hope your students enjoy it as much as mine did!