Friday, October 16, 2015

How to get students ENGAGED in Descriptive Writing!

In sixth grade in my curriculum, we learn about descriptive writing during our second unit of study. Descriptive writing is one certain students love and certain students hate. I have found that some of my students struggle just to write a basic sentence and an essay is too much to start off with. We work through many mini lessons with descriptive writing that I have found from some amazing bloggers throughout our teacher blogger world.

My first descriptive writing activity I always do is the descriptive writing monster. This activity is perfect for this time of year as well. I bought this activity with a $1 deal on TPT and it still is. You can view this product here. The students FIRST draw their monster and then describe each body part. After they are done with their descriptions, they then write a descriptive paragraph based on their picture and graphic organizer with the body part descriptions. This helps the students because they first drew a picture so it is a lot easier to describe something they are looking at directly. After the whole class is done, I have the kids all hang up their monsters and then I read the paragraphs one at a time and the students try to guess which monster is which. This really teaches them that they must be descriptive in their writing. It also allows them to have more examples of descriptive paragraphs.

The next descriptive writing activity that I love is one that really makes students think deeper. This is from Miss Radka's Rhapsody. Students use an emotion and first draw a picture of that emotion. I told my students specifically no people in the photo so they had to use colors, symbols, etc. After this point they wrote a paragraph describing the emotion--talk about making them think on a higher-level!

The last descriptive writing activity that I use to introduce descriptive writing is a POPCORN! descriptive writing activity. Even thought this is first grade TPT, I just used this graphic organizer with the five senses because I thought it was cute :) I popped the popcorn and went through the five senses and described each one. We then wrote a descriptive paragraph about the popcorn.

I hope these activities help you with descriptive writing with your students too! They have really work wonders with mine!


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