When you're working on the concept of "Show, Don't Tell" you use a multitude of sensory words instead of those boring, worn out words and phrases, such as "The leaves were pretty". Instead, you might say, "The golden and scarlet leaves floated on the breeze". So much more interesting when you say it the second way, isn't it?
I can think of no better time of year to incorporate sensory writing than Fall. It's the perfect time to get the kids outside and writing about what their sensory experiences. I created a Writer's Workshop that centers around this wonderful time of year.
Students choose whether they would like to write about their favorite outdoor setting, a homecoming game, a Fall food, or Fall clothing. I find that just by giving them choices, they are excited from the start.
I read mentor texts to them that have good examples of sensory words and figurative language. Students write their favorite examples in their Writer's Notebook as I read to them. Some of my favorite Fall books are:
|Great examples of Fall clothing words.|
|While it isn't specific to Fall, it does have great food descriptions.|
|Excellent visuals and descriptions of Fall foliage.|
After we've collected some great Fall words and phrases, students work in small groups based on which writing topic they've chosen. I meet with each group to help them fill out their Fall writing graphic organizer.
We talk about how to write a "Bold Beginning" to hook the reader. This is included in the Fall Writing packet and in my "Bold Beginnings and Catchy Conclusions" packet.
As I am working with small groups, the rest of the class is working cooperatively to editing their classmates' paragraphs using a color-coded editing checklist.
After several rounds of meeting with small groups and revisions, I go over the Fall Writing Rubric individually with each student. We discuss how I would grade their work and how they would grade their own work, based on the rubric.
If you'd like to pick up the Fall writing packet, you can click here.
I just love writing about Fall! Do you do writing units about Fall? How about Writer's Workshop? I'd love to hear about what you're doing in your Language Arts class!