Let's Revise!

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SWBAT revise their paragraphs to strengthen their content and structure.

Big Idea

To revise is to stop, reread, reflect, and ask questions.


12 minutes

Summary and Context:

One of the things I am excited about with the transition to the Common Core State Standards is the alignment of reading and writing.  In working with a scripted program, it was interesting to notice how often we had to realign the writing tasks because the program taught the processes separately. But now, students are expected to be writing about what they are reading. In my opinion, this allows the space for a richer experience and deeper understanding of the concepts they are learning. That is why I am teaching this lesson.

I will start with the students on the rug reviewing the writing process. I will teach them a specific revision process.

Then, I model the revision process with the work of one of students. I will show them how to use a checklist in their revision process. I have typewritten the work of the student because I want to be respectful and not embarrass anybody. This year I have some students with vision issues so in addition to using a transparency, everyone will have a copy. In this way it is more interactive.

After I am done modeling, they will use the checklist to revise their own work.   

Then, we will meet on the rug and have them share their revised pieces as well as talk about what they learned about the revision process. 

Lesson Opening:

I review the writing process. I talk about the revision stage. I talk with them about why we are revising and what it means to revise. I have created a chart with the revising process I want them to follow today: stoppingreflecting and asking questions. I briefly explain each step since I will be showing them more about each process later on.

I feel it is important to get across the idea that in revising, we are focused on making our ideas stronger, not changing the writing because there is something wrong with it. Also, I help them notice the prefix in the word revision and help them understand that in revising we see the work again to improve. 

Modeling The Revision Process

22 minutes

To model the revision process, I use a writing sample from one of my students. I have typewritten the work and have made a transparency of it so that I am able to use the overhead projector as I walk my students through the process.

I walk my students through the process one step at a time. Each one of them has their own copy. In revising I am following the process:

  1. Stopping (slowing down to reread)
  2. Reflecting (thinking about what is written)
  3. Asking questions

I am showing them how to revise using this process sentence-by-sentence as well to make sure the paragraph has:

  • an introductory sentence that states an opinion
  • sentences that provide evidence that support the opinion given and
  • a concluding sentence

I read each sentence at a time and use the Checklist For Revising to guide this process until we are done.

As, I model, I talk about the importance of rereading carefully to make the best decision about what changes to make. One question I will repeat is: "What would a reader need to see in this sentence to make it better?"

Revising By Themselves

15 minutes

To revise their own work, all my students need to do is turn the checklist sheet over. Now, they will use the checklist to revise their own paragraphs. As they work quietly, I will be walking around offering assistance. I am curious about the changes they will be making to their writing.

I offer assistance with directing them to use the checklist appropriately. I remind them to use the revising process I modeled.

Here are some of their work samples:

I pull a small group of students who need more attention at this time of the year.

Sharing What They Learned About Revising

5 minutes

I gather my students on the rug and we review what we have learned about the revision process. I believe in the power of reviewing. It helps my students synthesize their experience and make connections. I am curious as to their ideas on revising.

Coming together on the rug also allows me to bring closure to the lesson.