Independent Writing: The Character’s Reaction in My Weather Story | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA GK:M2:U3:L9

Independent Writing: The Character’s Reaction in My Weather Story

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These are the CCS Standards addressed in this lesson:

  • W.K.3: Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to narrate a single event or several loosely linked events, tell about the events in the order in which they occurred, and provide a reaction to what happened.
  • W.K.5: With guidance and support from adults, respond to questions and suggestions from peers and add details to strengthen writing as needed.
  • L.K.1: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
  • L.K.1a: Print many upper- and lowercase letters.
  • L.K.2: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.
  • L.K.2c: Write a letter or letters for most consonant and short-vowel sounds (phonemes).
  • L.K.2d: Spell simple words phonetically, drawing on knowledge of sound-letter relationships.
  • L.K.6: Use words and phrases acquired through conversations, reading and being read to, and responding to texts.

Daily Learning Target

  • I can tell the story of my character and the weather using pictures and words. (W.K.3, L.K.1a, L.K.2c, L.K.2d, L.K.6)
  • I can improve my writing using feedback from a partner. (W.K.5)

Ongoing Assessment

  • During Work Time B, as students draft their weather stories, circulate and note progress toward the writing and language standards of this lesson. (W.K.3, L.K.1a, L.K.2c, L.K.2d, L.K.6)
  • During Work Time C, listen for students to give kind, specific, and helpful feedback to their partner and then use the feedback their partner provides them to improve their weather stories. (W.K.5)

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1. Opening

A. Engaging the Learner: “Clouds” Poem (5 minutes)

2. Work Time

A. Modeling: Drafting a Reaction to a Weather Narrative (10 minutes)

B. Independent Writing: Drafting a Reaction to My Weather Narrative (15 minutes)

C. Structured Discussion: Critiquing a Partner’s Work (20 minutes)

3. Closing and Assessment

A. Reflecting on Learning (10 minutes)

Purpose of lesson and alignment to standards:

  • Students finish the written portion of their weather stories based on the planning, drawing, and role-playing they did in Lessons 2–5 (W.K.3, L.K.1a, L.K.2a, L.K.2c, L.K.2d, and L.K.6). Specifically, students focus on describing how their character felt in reaction to the weather.
  • Orally rehearsing their writing in Work Time A continues to help students grow their writing skills in a developmentally appropriate way.
  • As in Lessons 6–8, during Work Time B, students transfer the ideas they orally rehearsed into writing. In this lesson, less instructional time is allotted to this portion of the lesson than in Lessons 7–8 because students complete sentences frames that are provided for them.
  • Students have had several opportunities to give, receive, and then use feedback to improve their writing. During Work Time C, guide students toward providing specific feedback that references either their partner’s work or the High-Quality Work anchor chart. Also help students use the feedback they receive to improve their work in a meaningful way (W.K.5).

How this lesson builds on previous work:

  • This lesson builds upon the writing that students completed in Lessons 6–8 and asks students to use the planning, drafting, and role-playing from Lessons 2–5 to create a sense of closure to their weather stories.
  • This lesson provides a similar routine and structure to Lessons 6–8, allowing students to practice new skills in a familiar and supported way.
  • Revisiting learning targets over several lessons familiarizes students with the language of the target and lets them practice the skills in the target over time.
  • Continue to use Goal 1–3 Conversation Cues to promote productive and equitable conversation.

Areas in which students may need additional support:

  • Consider supporting students by seating them near anchor charts and models or by providing additional sentence frames as they write.
  • As students give and receive feedback during Work Time C, circulate to ensure they are offering kind, specific, and helpful feedback to their partner. Prompt students to reference the High-Quality Work anchor chart and their partner’s work in order to give this type of feedback.
  • During Work Time B, reference the Keyword cards for letter sounds to help students when writing. For example, remind students of the keyword associated with the letter “a” (alligator). Refer to the K-2 Reading Foundations Skills Block Learning Letters book for additional information.
  • During Work Time B, refer students to the Interactive High-Frequency Word Wall (at the back of the K–2 Reading Foundations Skills Block Teacher Guides).

Down the road:

  • In Lessons 10–11, students will participate in structured, small group conversations facilitated by the teacher as they complete the Unit 3 Assessment. Consider previewing the assessment in the Assessment Overview and Resources to fully understand what is required of students.
  • In Lessons 10–11, while one small group of students completes the Unit 3 Assessment with the teacher, three other small groups will engage in independent centers to prepare for the Weather Expo. Consider reviewing Lessons 10¬–11 before teaching them to fully understand the structure and setup of the centers and students’ rotation through them.
  • In Lesson 12, students will participate in a class-wide Weather Expo during which they will share and celebrate their work from this unit and the previous unit with visitors. Consider extending invitations to the principal, families, community members, and other teachers and classes to attend.

In Advance

  • Pre-distribute materials for Work Times A and B at student workspaces to ensure a smooth transition.
  • Post: Learning targets, “Clouds” poem, enlarged version of My Weather Story booklet, Hot Day chart, Windy Day chart, Snowy Day chart, Rainy Day chart, Conversation Partners chart, and applicable anchor charts (see materials list).

Tech and Multimedia

Consider using an interactive white board or document camera to display lesson materials.

  • If you recorded students reading the “Clouds” poem in Unit 2, play this recording for them to join in with.
  • Students complete their My Weather Story booklet using word-processing software—for example, a Google Doc.
  • Students use Speech to Text facilities activated on devices, or using an app or software such as Dragon Dictation.

If students were recorded critiquing their partner’s work in Lesson 6, consider replaying these recordings to remind students of the process or as a model for the group.

Supporting English Language Learners

Supports guided in part by CA ELD Standards K.I.C.10 and K.I.C.12

Important points in the lesson itself

  • The basic design of this lesson supports ELLs with opportunities to orally rehearse their ideas about character reactions with peers before beginning to write.
  • ELLs may continue to find it challenging to articulate their thinking during peer feedback. Provide additional modeling and whole class practice with the protocol as necessary. See Meeting Students’ Needs column in Lessons 6–8 for details.

Levels of support

For lighter support:

  • During Work Time C, if students are paired with a partner of a more advanced proficiency level, consider changing partners so students are placed in pairs of similar proficiency. This will foster independence while providing the opportunity to assess progress in speaking and listening.

For heavier support:

  • During Work Time A, model strategies for choosing a feeling word to use while writing page 5. (Examples: Look at the face on the drawing; imagine you are playing in the snow and think about how you might feel.)

Universal Design for Learning

  • Multiple Means of Representation (MMR): When reviewing different reactions to the weather, provide alternatives to auditory information by displaying a chart with images of different facial expressions and corresponding emotion words that students can refer to during independent writing. (MMR)
  • Multiple Means of Action & Expression (MMAE): As students give partners feedback, support planning by providing individual students with small sticky notes to attach to their pages. This will help students remember places where they want to add or make changes based on partner feedback. (MMAE)
  • Multiple Means of Engagement (MME): To limit distractions during independent writing, consider providing sound-canceling headphones or individual dividers.

Vocabulary

Key: Lesson-Specific Vocabulary (L); Text-Specific Vocabulary (T); Vocabulary Used in Writing (W)

Materials

  • “Clouds” poem (from Unit 2, Lesson 13; one to display)
  • My Weather Story booklet (from Lesson 2; pages 5–6; one for teacher modeling and one per student)
  • Expert meteorologist charts (from Lesson 1; one of each to display)
    • Hot Day chart
    • Windy Day chart
    • Snowy Day chart
    • Rainy Day chart
  • Peer Feedback anchor chart (begun in Lesson 6)
  • High-Quality Work anchor chart (begun in Unit 2, Lesson 7)
  • Conversation Partners chart (from Module 1)
  • Speaking and Listening Checklist (for teacher reference; see Assessment Overview and Resources)
  • Think-Pair-Share Protocol anchor chart (begun in Module 1)

Opening

OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Engaging the Learner: “Clouds” Poem (5 minutes)

  • Invite students to the whole group area.
  • Remind them that in the upcoming Weather Expo they will share a few of the poems they’ve learned, so it’s important to practice all of the poems.
  • Invite students to stand up.
  • Display the “Clouds” poem. Invite students to join you as you recite the poem aloud and act out the motions.
  • Repeat once or twice as time permits.
  • Consider providing differentiated mentors by seating students who may be more confident reciting the poem aloud with motions near students who may not feel as confident. (MMAE)

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Modeling: Drafting a Reaction to a Weather Narrative (10 minutes)

  • Remind students that they have been working on writing their weather stories.
  • Tell students that today they will finish their weather stories by writing the sentences for the last part, the reaction.
  • Direct students’ attention to the posted learning targets and read the first one aloud:

“I can tell the story of my character and the weather using pictures and words.”

  • Using a total participation technique, invite responses from the group:

“What have you done so far to tell the story of your character and the weather?” (We wrote about our characters, the weather, and what they did in the weather.)

  • Direct students’ attention to pages 5 and 6 of their My Weather Story booklet at their workspace.
  • Invite students to turn to an elbow partner and take turns sharing the ideas about the reaction in their weather stories. Support students as needed in using the drawings to recall how their characters felt because of the weather.
  • Remind students that you also completed drawings to help you plan your weather story. Direct students’ attention to the displayed teacher model of the My Weather Story booklet and briefly review what you have written so far by reading it aloud.
  • Direct students’ attention to the drawings you completed on pages 5 and 6 of the displayed My Weather Story booklet.
  • Tell students that you are going to use the ideas from your drawings to help you write about how your character felt because of the weather. Using the same process from Lessons 6–8, model how to do this for the reaction: Fernando felt happy after playing in the sun all day.
  • Similar to Lessons 6–8, invite students to turn to orally rehearse their own sentence with an elbow partner.
  • Circulate and support students in pointing to the appropriate parts of their drawings and help them connect the information in the pictures with the words they are saying. As you circulate, identify one or two students to share their completed sentences.
  • Refocus students whole group and invite students to share as desired.
  • Using the same process from Lessons 6–8, model how to turn the orally prepared sentence into writing on page 5 of the displayed My Weather Story booklet.
  • Repeat a similar oral drafting and then writing process for page 6 of the displayed My Weather Story booklet.
  • Inform students that now they will use their drawings to complete the sentence on pages 5 and 6 of their weather stories.
  • When reviewing different reactions to the weather, provide alternatives to auditory information by displaying a chart with images of different facial expressions and corresponding emotion words that students can refer to during independent writing. (MMR)
  • For ELLs: To ensure that the purpose of the teacher model and think-aloud is transparent, prompt students with a Conversation Cue: “Can you figure out why I am thinking about pages 5 and 6 of my booklet two times for the whole class to see?” (Answers will vary, but could include: First you are thinking about what you will write, then you are writing it.)
  • For ELLs: Brainstorm some feeling adjectives that students can use as they describe their characters’ reactions. Record and display each word with illustrations. Invite students to use the list during Work Time B. (Examples: excited, tired, scared.)
  • For ELLs: Model strategies for choosing a feeling word to use while writing page 5. (Examples: Look at the face on the drawing; imagine you are playing in the snow and think about how you might feel.)
  • For ELLs: Write and display the word reaction. Prompt students to notice the word action within this word. Discuss how a reaction is what you do or how you feel after something happens, or an action. Ask: “What is your reaction when somebody says a mean thing?” (cry; feel bad; walk away)

B. Independent Writing: Drafting a Reaction to My Weather Narrative (15 minutes)

  • Direct students’ attention back to their My Weather Story booklet and invite them to complete the sentences at the bottom of pages 5 and 6. Remind them that they are using words to show the information that they have already put in their drawings.
  • Circulate to support students as they complete the writing of the sentences they orally drafted. If necessary, ask students to repeat their drafted sentences orally to you or direct them to the Hot Day chart, Windy Day chart, Snowy Day chart, and Rainy Day chart to support their writing.
  • To help students express their ideas in the independent writing task, offer options for drawing utensils (examples: thick markers or colored pencils) and writing tools (examples: fine-tipped markers, pencil grips, slant boards). (MMAE)
  • Minimize distractions during independent writing by providing tools such as sound-canceling headphones or individual dividers. (MME)

C. Structured Discussion: Critiquing a Partner’s Work (20 minutes)

  • Refocus students whole group.
  • Offer students specific, positive feedback on their writing. (Example: “I noticed that Jaylen and Brittany worked very hard to make sure their words matched their pictures.”)
  • Remind students that in the previous few lessons they have been helping one another improve on their writing by sharing work with a partner and giving that partner feedback on his or her work.
  • Tell students that today they are going to get another chance to give and receive feedback on their writing.
  • Direct students’ attention to the posted learning targets and read the second one aloud:

“I can improve my writing using feedback from a partner.”

  • Using a total participation technique, invite responses from the group:

“How has your writing improved so far from the feedback your partner has given you?” (Student responses will vary, but may include: My partner told me to think about coloring my character carefully; my partner pointed out that I hadn’t capitalized the name of my character; etc.)

  • If productive, cue students to expand the conversation by saying more:

“Can you say more about that?” (Responses will vary.)

  • Direct students’ attention to the posted Peer Feedback anchor chart and briefly review it.
  • Briefly review the procedure for sharing work and giving feedback as necessary. Remind students to use the High-Quality Work anchor chart to provide feedback to their partner.
  • Referring to the Conversation Partners chart, invite students to partner up with their pre-determined talking partner and sit facing each other. Make sure students know which partner is A and which is B.
  • Invite students to begin sharing their work and giving feedback to each other.
  • Circulate and listen in. Take note of how students are interacting with each other using the Speaking and Listening Checklist.
  • Refocus students whole group.
  • Using a total participation technique, invite responses from the group:

“What is a piece of feedback your partner gave you that you are going to use? What will you add to or change about your story?” (Responses will vary.)

  • Direct students’ attention back to their My Weather Story booklet and invite students to use the feedback they received to make any changes or additions to their weather stories.
  • As students give partners feedback, support planning by providing individual students with small sticky notes to attach to their pages. This will help students remember places where they want to add or make changes based on partner feedback. (MMAE)
  • For ELLs: Point out that the word they will use in the frame “I think you did a good job of …” will always be in the -ing form. Provide examples to illustrate this and prompt students to generate their own examples, completing the sentence frame with an -ing word. (Examples: I think you did a good job of writing; coloring; drawing.)

Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Reflecting on Learning (10 minutes)

  • Refocus students whole group.
  • Offer students specific, positive feedback on what you observed as students gave each other feedback. (Example: “I saw that everyone referenced the High-Quality Work anchor chart to make sure they were giving their partner specific and helpful feedback.”)
  • Tell students they have been working hard to make sure their weather stories meet the aspects of quality that are listed on the High-Quality Work anchor chart.
  • Using a total participation technique, invite responses from the group:

“Why is it important to make sure our weather stories are of high quality?” (to make sure our readers understand them; to show our best work; writers always make sure their work is of high quality)

  • Tell students they are going to use the Think-Pair-Share protocol to reflect on how their weather stories are of high quality. Remind them that they used this protocol in previous lessons, and review as necessary using the Think-Pair-Share Protocol anchor chart. (Refer to the Classroom Protocols document for the full version of the protocol.)
  • Invite students to Think-Pair-Share with an elbow partner:

“What have you done to make sure your weather story is of high quality?” (I used the weather charts, I used the feedback my partner gave me, and I focused during the lessons when we were planning our stories.)

  • As students talk, circulate and listen in. Take note of the ideas students are sharing and target a few students to share out with the whole group.
  • Refocus students whole group and invite a few students to share out.
  • Tell students that in the next two lessons they will have a chance to revisit their weather stories, first making the covers and then adding any details or making any last changes.
  • Invite students to Think-Pair-Share with an elbow partner:

“What do you think you still need to do to improve your weather story so that it meets the criteria on the High-Quality Work anchor chart even more closely?” (add some details to my drawings, capitalize a few of the words in my sentences, double-check the spelling in my story)

  • Tell students that in the next two lessons they will prepare for the Weather Expo. That could include coming back to their weather stories to make any changes or additions.
  • After students reflect with partners on aspects of their writing that they want to improve, offer alternatives for auditory information by inviting students to share ideas with the whole class and scribing their responses on chart paper or a white board. (MMR)
  • For ELLs: Provide sentence frames to bolster their participation during the Think-Pair-Share: “I think I need to ______ to improve my story.”

There are no new supporting materials for this lesson.

Assessment

Each unit in the K-2 Language Arts Curriculum has one standards-based assessment built in. The module concludes with a performance task at the end of Unit 3 to synthesize their understanding of what they accomplished through supported, standards-based writing.

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