Writing To Sources-The Tail

3 teachers like this lesson
Print Lesson


Students will be able to produce a clear and coherent writing piece.

Big Idea

Students write a letter of recommendation for Tasha based on her experiences with her brother Junior.

Advanced Organizer

5 minutes

To get the students thinking about today's lesson, I will ask them to create a list of things they are good at and that someone would go to them if they needed help.  For example, I am really good at reading.  I may have friend recommend me for as a tutor or come to me for help with her child who struggles with reading.  

I will give the students about 5-7 minutes to brainstorm their list.  If they struggle with complimenting themselves, I will allow them to pick someone that they think is good at something and would recommend that person for a job/task.  

Once they have done this, we can share out our lists in a Round Robin.  Then, share out as a class. 


10 minutes

For today's lesson, the students are going to be writing a letter of recommendation for a character from the story "The Tail".  We have read this story and done extensive work annotating and analyzing it for characterization as well as making inferences.  

The main character has some experiences babysitting her brother Junior and now we need to write her a letter of recommendation for other babysitting jobs.  

First, I will take a few minutes to go through the expectations and guidelines for the letter.  I will display the handout onto the board and review the guidelines with the students.  

I will be sure to answer any questions or provide clarification as needed.  


Guided/Independent Practice

35 minutes

Now that we have reviewed the expectations for the letter, I am going to have the students start working.  Writing is one area where students either love it or hate it! It can be the most challenging days for the teacher when we write.  

I am anticipating a lot of "I don't know what to write"! To help the students generate some ideas, I will remind them the most important step in writing is the brainstorming! Brainstorming is so essential in the writing process and really helps us to focus and organize our thoughts, making it much easier.  

For the students who do not need my help with this, I will have them go ahead and work.  However, for the students who need my guidance, I can pull them aside and as a group, we can create a brainstorm list together and they can then use that to develop their letters. 

Some students will be ready to go once we brainstorm together.  However, there will still be the few students who just can't get started.  I will pull them aside and work with them on drafting the letter.  

As they are working, I will check in with the other students and help as needed.  


5 minutes

I want to give the students an opportunity to share their work! To do this, today for closure I will have them share their rough drafts with their Face Partners.  This will give them the chance to validate their work as well as hear what their peers had to say!