Elaborate! From Boxes and Bullets to a Paragraph

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SWBAT expand on their jottings to write a paragraph with a main idea and three supporting details.

Big Idea

Teach students to write complete sentences in an organized paragraph.


10 minutes

In today's lesson, I explicitly demonstrate to students how to turn a plan into an first/flash draft (Elaboration- from boxes and bullets to a paragraph).  Some students are struggling with turning their jottings on the plan into complete sentences.  For other students, the challenge they are facing is to use punctuation to revise run-on sentences.  A third problem I am addressing is students who write to much on their plan.  I am teaching them that they want to just jot down enough on their plan to capture their ideas- but they do not necessarily have to write complete sentences on their plan.  The reason for this is some students write everything on their plan- they are spending too much time on their plan and not enough time on the actual writing of their draft.  This amount of energy and time they are expending leaves little motivation for the drafting process.

I am pushing students to be able to generate ideas in their heads.  Then select the most important words from their thinking to jot down on their plans.  To be successful with this task students need to understand the difference between a phrase and a complete sentence.  I want them to understand that they can write a phrase that captures their idea on their plan.  I want them to learn the place for elaboration in on their draft.

Started by showing them a Common Mistakes Chart that I had made addressing the fragment sentences.


Strategy Lesson

15 minutes

I used student work to group students according to what they needed based on what they were currently doing.  I had 4 groups.  Students that were working successfully and didn't need any intervention.  Students who were writing too much on their drafts.  Students who were not turning their jottings into complete sentences. And the last group who had lots of run on sentences and were not breaking their three supporting details (bullets) into three distinct sentences.

I started with the group of students who needed more practice turning a Student's bulletsinto a complete sentence.  I used their Strategy lesson student 2 boxes and bullets as my teaching resource.  I put their plan under the document camera and asked for a volunteer to first read the main idea sentence (the box).  I asked if it was a complete sentence and if they wanted to add any more words.  After they practiced with the main idea sentence, I moved to the bullet points.  I asked a student to read the first bullet point and then to orally turn it into a complete sentence.  I moved through each point under one main idea.  Then as a way to close the strategy group, I demonstrated how to turn a box and bullet plan into a paragraph (Elaboration).  I modeled writing the plan to paragraph with complete sentences, proper punctuation and capitalization (Elaboration:students restated the jottings in complete sentences).