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A lesson inspired by the NNWP's
Six by Six
Print Guide: Traits Writing for Little Writers

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About this lesson's author:

Shannon Allan is a first grade teacher at Alyce Taylor Elementary. She is currently working with a team teacher and enjoys sharing writing ideas with her partner. Shannon loves to incorporate art with her writing lessons.

This Lesson:
Rain Drop
Shape Poem

Focus Trait:
Word Choice

Lesson's Mentor Text:

Rain Drop, Plop!
by Wendy Cheyette Lewison

Thirty-six trait-based lessons for
primary writers can be found in:

The lesson on this page was inspired by the Northern Nevada Writing Project's Six by Six Guide. Click here to see how to order your own copy, which contains thirty-six trait lessons like the one found on this page.

Big Ideas behind this Lesson:

Trait Focus: Word Choice –The concept focus is Word Choice using common shapes and ideas as a way to help us develop vocabulary surrounding a curricular topic.

Standards Addressed:

  • With assistance, write sentences that address a single topic.
  • Use nouns, verbs, and adjectives in writing.
  • With assistance identify content specific vocabulary in text.

Connecting to a Mentor Text:

: Rain Drop, Plop! by Wendy Cheyette Lewison

Talking: Day 1. After we read aloud the mentor text, we brainstormed as a class different words that can describe rain. I recorded the words onto a large sheet of chart paper. As we collected adjectives for rain, I asked the students to think about the way rain feels, smells, tastes, sounds and looks like to help them think of as many adjectives as they could.


Day 2. We reread the mentor text and also revisited our brainstorm of rain adjectives. At this point the students came up with a few more adjectives to add. I posted the chart paper in a place where everyone could see it. Using a template cut into the shape of a large raindrop taped to the middle of a white piece of construction paper, the students used a blue colored pencil to write the word ‘rain’ at the top of their raindrop on the white paper. They then were able to choose any adjectives from the list we generated and continue to write them around the raindrop template. They were reminded to put a space between each new adjective they added. When they had gone all the way around the outside of the raindrop and ended up at the word ‘rain’ again, they were done. Next, they took off the raindrop template and were left with a poem in the shape of a raindrop on their paper…a shape poem.

Day 3. The students cut around the outside of their raindrop poem and glued it to the middle of a blue piece of construction paper. The students read their poems to the class.

Tools Needed:

Raindrop shaped template on tag board for each student, blue colored pencil for each student, one piece of blue construction paper for each student, glue, and scissors


We read these poems to each other as a class and then posted them in the hallway during our weather unit. We also shared them with other classes.

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