Today, I start the lesson by saying, “Third Graders! I have something special to share with you today! I brought you something special!” Today, I’ve brought along pencils that say “Third Graders are #1!” on them. “Boys and girls, I’ve brought you these special pencils today to remind you that the best story is a story you’re writing of your own. Today, you’re going to get to start writing your narratives, and I know they’re going to be great!”
Before we start writing today, I pull up my example of my coral reef story map. I share with the students how today, if I were writing, I start with the beginning of the story by making sure I set the scene of my story so that my readers understand the setting. I would also take some time to introduce the characters, give a little background information on them, and make the reader feel like they know the character. Then I would remind my students about the middle of the story, where we find the problem, and make sure that they build up to this as they write by making sure their events are in a sequential order. Lastly, I remind the kids of the end of the story, where there will be a solution, and remind them that they should close up the story at the end.
I say, “Okay third graders, those are all the components of a narrative, and so I think you’re ready to write! Let’s spend the rest of our time today on working on this important work!” And then, the students begin writing!
As students, are writing, I circulate and check to see how students are doing with their narratives. This is really the time where I can assess how well the students understand the parts of a narrative and provide corrective feedback as needed. It’s also a fun time to walk around the room. There’s almost a soft hum as kids are working on writing their stories! They’re so excited to turn to others and say, “Can I read you what I have so far?” This is wonderful!
I pull out our Clapping Ball to regain everyone’s attention. (See my Strategy Videos on the Clapping Ball for more information). I say, “Boys and girls, I’m just thrilled with the work I see here today! I think these are going to be amazing narratives! When we work on these next, we’re going to work on editing our work, to make any corrections to our stories, but also to jazz them a up some more, too! Let’s tuck our important work away into our writing folders for next time! Well done writing today!”