A Chapter Book-inspired Writer's Notebook Lesson

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Publish your students at our Ning!
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Student Samples Page:
To Imitate
Two Nature Writers

creating a "showing" description
about a natural object or place

The writing of author Patricia MacLachlan is inspiring student writers to try new techniques with the traits of word choice and sentence fluency. Join us in teaching (and adapting) this on-line lesson and sharing your students' work.

You can publish up to three of your students' edited and finished stories at this page.

Use these samples to inspire your student writers! Discussing the strengths of published student samples before, while, and after using this on-line assignment is important. If your students are engaged in trait- or skill-inspired discussions about any of the samples we've posted here, they will produce better writing, especially if you help them take their writing all the way through the writing process.

Thank you, those who share their students' writing with us.

Additional Student Samples Being Sought:
Grades 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Learn more about WritingFix's policies for publishing student work by visiting our Publishing Student Writers Information Page.

WritingFix is currently seeking additional student samples from this writing assignment that can be featured in this space. Submitted student work must show evidence of revision, editing, and the final draft must be typed and sent through e-mail.

To have us consider your students' writing for inclusion on this page, you must post the writing to our Ning page dedicated to this lesson. Click here to access that page. You must first be a member of the Writing Lesson of the Month Network in order to post.

Student Samples: Elementary

The Forgotten Waterfall
by Calvin, fourth grade writer

Through hundreds of decaying saplings lies a magnificent waterfall.  A waterfall that has not seen life for one-hundred years.  It looked down at the world stretching out before its aged eyes.  The waterfall feels imprisoned in the center of the deserted rocky mountains.  Its after-spray feels like leopards claws.  Besides the waterfall, the only sound within one hundred kilometers is the snapping of dead branches.  It holds memories of children swinging on ropes.  The remains of rock-skipping days lay sunken to the bottom.  The waterfall, forgotten or not, is thirsty for more.

(Click here to open/print Calvin and three of his classmates' natural descriptions.)  

The Oasis
by Gaby, sixth grade writer

As you lounge drowsily on the rough ebony rock, surrounded by an aquamarine water oasis, you feel almost as if you are a mystical mermaid. Beyond the crystal clear water lies a land of peace and tranquility. In the horizon is a deserted island with an abundance of lavish trees. Bordering the emerald island is an alabaster sand blanket. The atmosphere is bursting with pure white cumulus clouds decorating a turquoise sky.

The Pond
by Megan, sixth grade writer

As I walk through thousands of dying bushes, I smell something very welcoming. The leaves and sticks crack beneath my feet. I race to see what I longed to see. I push the tall bushes aside, and I see the most wonderful sight I have ever seen in my life. It’s so magical that I am speechless. The pond is the most blue and clear I have ever seen. The trees are the greenest in the world, and the flowers, such a beautiful shade of gold. In the distance, I hear animals crying, longing for love. The air is piercing, yet I stay warm. As I take a good, long look around at this marvelous sight, I see a beautiful mountain wanting someone to climb it. This place, so perfect I don’t want to take a step. It’s sad that more people don’t know about this.

(Click here to open/print these sixth grade samples to discuss with your students.)  

Student Samples: Middle School

The Forgotten Creek
by Samantha, seventh grade writer

Through a maze of snapped twigs and kicked rocks, past an abundance of decaying bushes that hug one another like a family of grizzlies, lies a lone thirsty creek that holds memories. Grains of sand lie in weary puddles that once were mighty lakes--the dead remains of rock-skipping summer days.

The only sound that can be heard is the pleading cry of bugs as they inch across the dry plain, wanting water, wanting life. Clumps of trees frame the open sky, letting the tired light draw pictures in the dirt with its gentle, aged fingers. Children once played here.

When their days of hide-and-seek and rope swings were tucked away into the back of their young souls as they spread their wings to take flight into life, the lively river faded. For when childhood is lost, the magic of their secret creek dies with it.

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