Sunday, October 10, 2010

Growing Narrative Writers

Second graders begin their year writing personal narrative papers. Teachers use Launching the Writing Workshop from the Lucy Calkin and Colleagues 3-5 Units of Intermediate Writing as a guide for their instruction. (Second Grade teachers use the 3-5 kit, because our Kindergarten and First Grade teachers thoroughly use the K-2 kit so our students are ready for deeper learning.) The narratives are not expected to meet the standard this early in the year. In fact, we only teach about half of the elements in the beginning of the year and save the other half when we revisit narratives later in the year. There will be a definite change in terms of writing craft and conventions between our fall narratives and spring narratives. I can't wait to see the difference as our young learners grow.

Last week, as I focus walked Second Grade, I could see that most classrooms had published their narrative pieces and were moving on to Responses to Literature. So, on Thursday, I spent some time in Second Grade reading the students' writing. I pulled two samples to share with you. They do not meet the Second Grade standards for the end of the year expectations, but they fall within the parameters of what has been taught. You will notice grammatical, spelling, and sentence structure errors, however we expect that from beginning of the year Second Graders. What we really focus on is telling a personal story and writing fluency. When students have fluency, it is much easier when they go to the revising and editing portion of the standard.
You will notice after the student's writing a Coaching Rubric. The teacher had each student self reflect and then had them meet with parnter for a peer reflection. When the peer reflected they also gave the student a compliment and a suggestion. After that, the teacher filled in the rubric based on beginning of the year expectations and left a comment for the student at the bottom of the paper.
Student Sample #1
Getting My New Kartay Belt
Hmm, should I test for my belt? I was testing for my orange belt. I was extied, very extied to get my belt. I have to break a board, form, sporing, wepins, self difen's, and combos. When I do my form it is hard to remember all of my moves. I could not kick high like my master. To kick you have to bring your nee up then bring your foot out next bring your foot back down last bring your nee down do it fast and you did a kick. when I became a camal belt I can spor with geaer but I am not a camel belt so I cannot spor right now. Next I did

my wepon's. Wepon's are easy. Next is bourd brack's. My bourd brack's are I have to make a fist then punch it down. My is to kick up it is easy. There were not many poeple around. The room was small. There was a stuck of belt on the wall. I got everything right. No body else was test for there belt. It smelled very good. The floor felt soft, very soft. It was quiet, very quiet. My sister was not there I wish she was there. The color of my siut was white there were black spots on my siut. My master told my mommy and sister I should start karty. But my mom replied, "It was to much." It was really to much. It cost $600.00 dollar's. I finaly got my new belt and I even got a resband it was so cool. Then we went to go pick up my sister.

And she asked "Why did you get a new belt?" And I replied because I did hard working.

Teacher: I like how you used a transition word-next. You also put dialouge in your story.
Student Sample #2

Onse my mom graduated. The place lookt like a basketball cort. My grandma was ther with me so was my mom's boyfrind. I was happy for mom. She came out & the gradduating song was on. She waulk to a empty chair to sit in. I was six.

Someone calld her name and I think is was something like a diploma that she got from a lady. I didn't know her name. After mom came out some other pepel came out. I bet ther Mom's & Dad's are proud of them to. My famaly was rihgt next to me & I was rihgt in the

middel like the Middel Chld Blues. I was calling my mom's name but she did not notis that I was calling her name. But...she lookt around for me. She did not look at the rihgt part of the room. I was not mad at her because it is her spesheel day! Wen I got home I

said to mom "Congragolashons!" She replid "Thank you." replid mom.

Teacher: You did a good job sequencing your story.

Stay tuned for our progress...

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