Transitions in a story

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SWBAT use a variety of transitions to convey shifts in writing.

Big Idea

Goldilocks and Transitions!


First, I must give credit to my colleague, Sheryl, for providing this quick transition review for one of our “short days”.  Yesterday, I introduced a number of transitions that the students categorized into various functions that the transitions are used.  This follow-up lesson, allowed students to first, use common transitions, then scrutinize a new list of transitions that are definitely better word choice.

Common Transitions

10 minutes

As we began class, I quickly reviewed the use of transitions that we had practiced yesterday.  Today, I explained that we would be using transitions that the students have probably used throughout their elementary years.

On the board, I wrote – so, then, at this, next, by now, first, suddenly, lastly. 

I explained that I was passing out a text of a familiar children's story to each of the students.  Independently, students worked on completing the story using the transitions from the board.  Each word could only be used once.

Insert Synonyms

20 minutes

As a class we reviewed the answers.  We then discussed yesterday’s transition lesson in which students tried to incorporate enhanced transitions which would improve their writing.

I then explained that I had some transitions that would definitely improve this story; were they ready to try to substitute the correct words?   Immediately they took the challenge.  I let them work with a partner.

I wrote the new transition words on the board:  immediately, simultaneously, consequently, initially, finally, meanwhile, by this time, not surprisingly.

Working as partners, students began to substitute the new transitions for the original words given.  We then reviewed the answers and discussed the reasons why one word was more effective that another.

Next students added these transitions to their notebooks for future reference.