Reflection: Writing Across the Disciplines Now You See It, Now You Don't... Dissolving Matter - Section 5: Evaluate/(Homework)


Paragraph Frames


I provided a paragraph frame for my students to compare their models of salt and soil solutions as part of wrapping up the  Now You See It, Now You Don't... Dissolving Matter lesson.  I used this frame to help my students write an evidence based paragraph that was focused on their outcomes during the investigation. This structure of the paragraph was a simple framework for them to use as they processed their investigation details and gave them a way to organize their thinking.  I found using this format was especially beneficial to my English language learners and special education students as many of them struggle with writing in general; therefore by providing them with a framework to organize their thoughts as they compared their evidence from the outcomes of the salt and soil mixtures, removes anxiety or feeling overwhelmed.  Even with my average students, having this structure guided them through developing a more precise explanation of what happened when they tried to combine salt and water together and soil and water together.

Incorporating paragraph frames are a good way to differentiate instruction as some students may require more or less support for effective writing.  To begin, it is necessary to determine the intent or purpose of the paragraph for expressing the concepts of the lesson. Are students comparing/contrasting?... persuading?...describing?... sequencing?... cause and effect?  Once that has been decided, appropriate transition words that correlate to the type of writing are decided.  These frames are helpful in developing written language skill and are adaptable to any content area as they support students as they become better independent writers as they convey their understanding of the concepts within the lesson.

  Writing Across the Disciplines: Using a Paragraph Frame
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Now You See It, Now You Don't... Dissolving Matter

Unit 2: Structure, Function, and Properties of Matter
Lesson 11 of 19

Objective: SWBAT demonstrate that some matter may seem to have disappeared when it is dissolved, but it is still there.

Big Idea: Students will compose a written paragraph to explain why salt dissolves in water and soil does not.

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