We meet on the rug today to start our lesson. I start by asking the students what they liked most about all of the stories we’ve heard so far! The students are excited to talk about all their favorite parts, so I let students turn and talk to each other for a little while until I can hear that conversation is finished on this topic. I get students refocused and ask them to share a few of their favorite parts.
Now I ask my students, “Boys and girls, can you tell me what all these stories had in common? We’ve read quite a few! Can you think of anything they’ve had in common?” The students offer a few ideas, such as they all had animals, or they all had a funny part. Then one student says, “They all had to do with the ocean!” I say, “Yes! They do all have to do with the ocean! Good narratives have a beginning, middle, and end that work together. What ideas do you have for stories that could take place at or near the ocean? Can you think of some beginning, middle, and end ideas?”
I let the third graders share their ideas and I jot them down on a new anchor chart for Beginning (B), Middle (M), and End (E). I support the kids by tossing in my own ideas to model, particularly when they seem to be out of ideas on how to connect together a beginning, middle, and end.
Once we have our ideas posted, I say, “Boys and girls! You just started writing your very own narrative! A narrative has a beginning, middle, and end! Just look at all the ideas we have! This is wonderful!"
Now, I say to the students, “I bet you are ready to start writing your very own narratives down, right?” Students make comments like, “Yes! Can we start writing?” I say, “Sure! Let’s get started today by thinking about what our beginning, middle, and end narrative parts will be!” I send students back to their seats and give each student a Beginning, Middle, End Template (see the Resources section). I let students start sketching out their ideas!
Before we close our lesson today, I ask, “Would anyone would like to share their ideas for their narrative? What beginning, middle, and end are you thinking of having in your story?” Students share their ideas, and I tell them how wonderful these stories sound! “These are going to be amazing narratives, third graders! Let’s put these in our writing folder for tomorrow so we can continue our important work then!”