I taught the students how to write a book review early on in the school year. I wanted to do them intermittently and electronically. I was envisioning informal Amazon.com-like reviews, meant more to encourage peers to read the books they recently finished, than show proof of what they read. This kinda went by the wayside, as we became more and more consumed with the intensive writing pieces we worked toward each unit.
Still, I felt it was important to sneak one in as a gauge of whether they remembered the form or not. The Guiding Question asks them to write a quick, one-paragraph review of The Fourth Stall, the book we read together as a class.
It also felt important to have them be able to briefly summarize the book because they'll have to do it in their upcoming Literary Analysis Essay.
Because this is my first year teaching 6th grade and I wasn't exactly sure what to expect when it comes to their knowledge of poetry, I created a Limerick handout and worksheet that would walk them through the process. The directions are included, but I also spent time in class going over Limericks and what they sound like--at times even clapping out the syllables, or the beat.
On the first page, it felt important that they were allowed to have choice, so I created a spot where they could create any Limerick their little hearts desired. These were certainly not sophisticated, as you can tell by this Student choice limerick, but it was a place for them to practice with the form.
Next, students flipped to the back of the sheet where they were asked to write a Limerick related to The Fourth Stall. This was a bit more difficult because the main antagonist's name is "Staples" and nobody could rhyme anything with that. Here's a student example of The Fourth Stall Limerick.