Hello, there! If you’ve been following along, all week I’ve been sharing the things that I’ve been doing with my students. It’s only our second week, so the students are learning about my expectations for reading and writing workshop – and about the importance of improving word choice.
Yesterday, I did lessons on tired words and weak verbs. We started today with a review of what they learned yesterday, and then each student did revised some sentences that needed better word choice.
Next, I gave each group of students an 11 x 17 sheet that had a sentence written across the top. They had to underline the weak verbs and tired words; then, they had to re-write the sentence.
Once they’d finished their sentences, each group passed their sheet clockwise to another group. That group had to re-write the sentence and change the meaning by changing some of the words. The situation had to be the same, but they could change words to create a better picture in the reader’s mind.
We repeated the exercise until every group had a chance to re-write the sentence. At that point, each sheet went back to its original group – and they had to choose their favourite sentence and be ready to explain why.
It was an effective exercise for the beginning of the year. I got to circulate and get to know my new students better as I guided them through the exercise. Some groups needed a little more help than others, while some flew through it because they knew exactly what I wanted them to do an how to do it. If you’d like to grab the sheets I used for this exercise, you can grab them right here.
We followed this exercise up with another reading session where they had to mark a passage where the writer made strong language choices. The discussions about this were better than yesterday – they’re getting the hang of what I’m expecting when we do this. It’s all about skill building and getting them ready to do some literary analysis and to create their personal narratives in a week or so.
Tomorrow is all about speaking workshop and more descriptive writing. Stay tuned!
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If you’re interested in the lessons I mentioned in this post, you can get more information by clicking the following:
Activities for Independent Reading
Word Choice Lessons
Reading Workshop Bundle of Activities
Would you like to read about my other lessons this week? Click here for lesson one, here for lesson two, and here for lesson three.