In my lesson openers I always have a "connect" in which I connect students' thinking about yesterday's lesson to today's lesson. I then have a "teach" in which I model for students the lesson of the day and also have them try it out. When I think about my modeling, I use three categories; skill, strategy, and process. I model by stating the skill to the students, then giving them a strategy in which to use the skill, followed by the process to try out the strategy.
Connect: I will say, “Yesterday we put all our components of a memoir together into a second draft of another idea we have generated so far and concentrated on capturing and conveying our experiences through detail. I have noticed in our writing that a majority of us do not paragraph as we are writing. Today we are going to write our last draft of one last idea for a memoir by concentrating on paragraphing. Attached is my video about how I picked paragraphing for the memoir unit.
Teach: I will say, “In order to have clear and coherent (logical) writing, I am going to practice the skill of organizing my memoir into paragraphs and the strategy of using my resources. The process I will use is as follows:
1) Look through my notebook and pick one last idea I have generated.
2) Draft an outline of my idea
3) Start writing my idea keeping in mind the context, point of view, detailed narrative and reflection in my memoir.
4) Organize my writing in a logical manner by using my resource; “When and How Should I Pargraph?” chart.
I will then show the students how I look through my notebook and pick another idea I have generated. I will first quickly draft an outline. I will then start writing my memoir by keeping the components of a memoir in mind as I refer to the anchor chart and the reminders on the side of the rough draft sheet. (I will have my first paragraph with my context, reflection and point of view completed so I am not writing in front of them for long).
When I get to my narrative I will stop at when a new person speaks and when the setting changes. I will make it a point to use the paragraphing and transition chart (I will make sure I choose a moment where this happens in the first five sentence so that I am not writing in front of them for very long).
Active Engagement: I will say,” Take your draft from yesterday and make a paragraph sign (I will show them the one we will use consistently in the class, which should also be included on your chart).”
I will check for understanding by looking over student’s shoulders (at least 3 students-one who is at standard, one is approaching standard, and one who is above standard).
Closing of Active Engagement: I will say, “Remember in order to have clear and coherent (logical) writing, successful writers practice the skill of organizing their memoir and the strategy of using their resources. The process writers go through is look through their notebook and pick another idea. They then start writing their idea by keeping in mind the context, point of view, detailed narrative and reflection in my memoir. Finally, they organize their writing in a logical manner by using their resources.
Independent Practice: I will say, “Now you are going to write out your last draft and make certain you are paragraphing at logical places and using transition words. On your rough draft sheet, I want your to write “remember paragraphs with transition words” in the column.”
They should write for at least 25 minutes if not more. They should be adding all of the other components of a memoir that are on the side of the rough draft sheet (context, point of view, reflection, narrative and then a reflection at the end).
As they are working independently and quietly, (I like to play classical or smooth jazz for“writing”music (I just create a play list on Pandora Internet radio) I will confer with them about their writing using the attached possible conferences sheet.
Partner Work: Students will be directed to share the part of their narrative where they were really concentrating on developing and capturing their experience. Before you talk, hand out sticky notes or quarter sheets of paper with tape.
I will say, “In your partner groups of two, you will both be sharing your writing. It is important that you do not write on your partner’s writing, it is their writing and we want to respect that. I want you to read over your partner’s writing and see if they are using paragraphs and transition words. If they are not, give them feedback and write it on the sticky note.
Closing: For today students will turn in their drafts to me instead of giving them an exit ticket. I want to see if they added all the components of a memoir and are paragraphing correcting. I am looking to see what I need to review before they formally give one draft a last look tomorrow.