This is a winter extension of my very successful "Writing Details 1 Day Mini-lesson=Success!" (Original): Writing Details 1 Day Mini-lesson = Success!
Just 1 mini-lesson for Writer's Workshop and 6+1 Traits, will cure your class of general sentences, teaching students how to expand on the sentence by adding details. In one day, students can move beyond writing a single sentence to writing an entire paragraph full of details that answers questions such as: Who, What, When, Where, Why, How, and Which.
Each statement in this activity relates to the winter season: cold weather, hot chocolate, snowmen, skating, sledding, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, taking a vacation, New Year's celebration, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Groundhog Day, President Lincoln's birthday, Valentine's Day, President's Day, and President Washington's birthday.
I love writing, but not all students do. With Madeline Hunter's Essential Elements of Instruction in mind, I designed this lesson to include modeling, guided practice, and then independent practice, all without a pencil,so students practice the skill orally, which takes the fear and dread out of writing.
During the lesson, the teacher reads a statement on a card that I provide. Then, students orally ask the teacher questions (who, what, when, where, why, how, which) about the statement read aloud. My class mastered this one-day mini-lesson, and your class can, too!
After students have a turn at this oral activity, they pick up pencils and either start a new writing assignment, or revise a previous writing piece, adding the details. Students can learn to add details to creative story writing as well as informational texts and essays. That is why I varied the sentences to begin with: I...; We...; She...; He...; They..., There was....".
The next day, when my students took turns reading aloud their narratives and the student "audience" asked the 5W questions to the writer, my class could ask themselves these questions about THEIR OWN WORK and self-critique their own revisions.
OPTIONS: For this mini-lesson, you can have students answer individually, or answer as a team to help challenged students, or play a Jeopardy-style game for points to engage the class; Jeopardy-style category cards and points labels are included in this file.
EXTRAS: I've included optional writing pages, too, so students can expand on a selected sentence from their rough copy writing, finishing with a wonderfully, detailed paragraph. There are two pages, for younger students, with dashed lines, and another writing page for older students without dashed lines.
If you enjoyed this activity, come back and rate it. And, please share if you tried it "Jeopardy-Style"; that idea only came to me after I had completed the lesson and had success anyway.
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*Writing Details 1 Day Mini-lesson=Success! (Fall Theme): Writing Details 1 Day Mini-lesson (Fall Theme) = Success!
*Writing Details 1 Day Mini-lesson=Success! (Original): Writing Details 1 Day Mini-lesson = Success!