Gnomes Read, Write, and Think

"Yeah, I've seen those things they think are gnomes," said Ron, bent double with his head in a peony bush, "like fat little Santa Clauses with fishing rods…” -JK Rowling

Where We Are: Informational Text

The deadline for our informational text has been extended.  It is now due May 13.  ‘Tis the season for state testing.

As far as our informational text goes, we have made tremendous headway.  We have studied three mentor texts, “The Sixth Sense” by Scott Bestul from the May 2012 issue of Field and Stream, “Can the Wilderness Heal?” by Bryan Hodgson from the January 1990 issue of National Geographic, and “The Greatest Paper Airplane in the World” by Conn and Hal Iggulden from The Dangerous Book for Boys. We have referred to the texts over and over throughout our unit of study.

After crafting a strong essential question, students have worked hard to find “three reliable sources” to provide background knowledge for their work.  They’ve learned that reliable sources meet stringent criteria for accuracy, authority, objectivity, currency, and coverage.  Combing through thousands of hits on the Internet to find sources that can be trusted has been a big job!

Having done this research, students have carefully crafted a plan (called a “tree map”) that will guide them through the writing process.  After adding transitions to our plan, we will be ready to orally rehearse each of the paragraphs.  Oral rehearsal allows us to work out the “bumpy spots” in our writing so that we know what we want to say when we actually start to write.

Our next step will be to draft our texts.  Many students have already begun their drafts in their notebooks.  Some have started to type their drafts.  With time, we will squeeze into the computer lab’s busy schedule in order to move on to the final work on our informational texts, the drafting, revising, editing, and publishing.

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