Context of writing
A second grade girl wrote this story in a writing workshop where she was given free choice of topics.
What is this child able to do as a writer?
- She has generated an idea to write about that she feels strongly about.
- She sticks to the topic.
- She shows an awareness of an audience by asking a question to her reader (‘Have you ever heard of a dog ers?’).
- She uses conventions such as capital letters and ending punctuation for most sentences.
What does this child need to learn next?
This child has a lot to say about her topic, but she is having difficulty organizing her ideas. She jumps around between describing her dog and telling about fun things she likes to do with her dog. She could benefit from learning how to group similar sentences into paragraphs and learning how to sequence important story events.
She may want to reread her piece and sort her sentences into those that describe her dog and those that tell what she likes to do with her dog. She could use one highlighter color for one topic and another highlighter color for the other topic. Then, she could rewrite her piece with all of one topic in one paragraph and the other topic in a second paragraph. The teacher could show her, and the rest of the class, how to write a topic sentence for each paragraph. The teacher could use her sentences as the mentor text and the class could generate several topic sentences for her to choose from.
The paragraph hamburger strategy could help her organize her ideas around a topic sentence and supporting details.