Saturday, April 20, 2013

Non-Fiction Response Writing

What a week! My writing teammate and I had been planning for this week for a while. Our district wanted our kiddos to respond to non-fiction text in the form of a response book. They were to read about several arctic animals and then write and draw what they learned in their own book. I was so excited at the beginning of the week when little snow showers could be seen outside my classroom window falling to make it not so absurd to be reading about arctic animals in mid-April. We introduced the unit by reading a few pages from Big Babies, Little Babies by D.K. Publishing and Wolves by Seymour Simon. As a whole group we completed two anchor charts as a review of what we just read and used the text to label our pictures.

All kiddos then began to read their own copy of Amazing Arctic Animals by Jackie Glassman. It was amazing to see how many connections they could make to other texts we have read throughout the year. We were all ready to begin our writing response book the next day. And then it happened...a delayed start because of the snow (A first for our district)! You would think I would be excited. Not so fast. I run my classroom to the minute...wait let me rephrase the second. Because our second grade rotates all of our kiddos for literacy, math, and writing it was a tad bit tricky to make sure both my writing blocks were able to begin their writing response books. And then some kiddos started to arrive at 10:15. And when I say some I mean I was missing three kiddos and my teammates were missing up to six! Thank goodness I had my Frozen Planet DVDs in my desk! Quickly, I made a response sheet for our kiddos to write three facts and connections from the text we read the day before. It was so cute to hear my kiddos shout out, "Look! The arctic hare from the book." We started Wednesday by reviewing what we read in our text and labeling the animals from activities in my upcoming Arctic Animals Literacy and Math Pack. And then it announcement about an early release at 1:00! WHAT!!! Quickly, I demonstrated to my kiddos how to take notes from their story and record it on their response sheets below through the Reading and Jotting Process.

My kiddos were such troopers! They worked so hard using their text and recording their responses. One of my teammates even rearranged her afternoon schedule so I could see her kiddos for writing before they all left at 1:00. FINALLY on Thursday, a full day of school. We discussed how to use everything in front of us (book, response sheets, labeling activities, and anchor charts) to begin writing our own book. I modeled for them how to use the pages in their book. The kiddos picked a muskox so I wrote Muskox as the heading and drew a picture. All the kiddos told me what to write and what to label on the picture. So proud of my kiddos when they told me to start with an indent, use my transition words with commas, and not to copy from the book.
Here is what they came up with.
I know I have used the word proud so many times, (my kiddos would say that I am not using good word choice) but that is how I feel about all of these "almost third graders". They spent Thursday and Friday writing and drawing their response books. With all of the interruptions during the week they did a phenomenal job. I believe that we are going to have so many books to choose from when we select "benchmark responses" next week during our SOAR meeting. Big smile!

No comments:

Post a Comment