A Chapter Book Writing Lesson from WritingFix
Focus Trait: IDEA DEVELOPMENT Support Trait: WORD CHOICE

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Actions Speak Louder
than Words

creating a character sketch inspired by an interesting verbs and actions that show

The writing of author Sharon Creech is inspiring student writers to try new techniques with the traits of idea development and word choice. 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 4, 5, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12

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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. Teachers: if you can help us obtain up to three student samples, along with a digital photo of the student(s) and a signed permission slips, we will send you either a complimentary copy of one of the Northern Nevada Writing Project's print publications.

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Student Sample: Upper Elementary
(Samples posted at WritingFix underwent all steps of the writing process.)

My Friend, Master Quan
by Dallen, sixth grade writer

It all started at Panda Express. I was thinking about what to order when I heard someone complaining about the lack of spiciness. He was saying it needed to be broiled in a wok with even more peppers! When I looked at him, I knew he was a ninja who loved fire. Why? Because he was wearing a Ninja & Flames Convention t-shirt.

He turned, saw me staring at his shirt and said,” Do you like hot and spicy foods?”

I simply said, “Yes I do.”

He smirked and said “Good.” That’s how it started.

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His name is Master Quan. He teaches kung-fu to infants and the elderly. He enjoys watching action movies on his Hi-Def T.V. He also likes practicing kung-fu. He sometimes dips his weapons in petroleum and lights them on fire. Then, he destroys the dummies he makes out of Ding-dongs and things Master Quan buys off the Internet.

The only problem with him is there are times when he got clumsy. I was watching his plasma T.V. while he was practicing his kung-fu. The spear he was using flew past my head and stabbed a gigantic hole in the T.V. It exploded! Oh, did I mention that the spear was on fire and it singed my eyebrows? All that Quan had to say was, “Wow! There goes $15,000.”

Master Quan is cool, lives for the thrill, has mega skills, enjoys fire, knows kung-fu, and has--I mean, had--a Hi-Def T.V. He’s a good friend and he’s hilarious.

 


Student Samples: Middle School
(Samples posted at WritingFix underwent all steps of the writing process.)

Vivian Chai
by Christine, eighth grade writer

I befriended Vivian when I was in grade one. We've been very good friends for eight years ever since our first meeting. She left Chinese school, but she's coming back for the credit course next year in grade nine.

Vivian's very funny, and she has a good sense of humor. Not only does she have a lot of funny jokes, but she also laughs all the time and she doesn't mind making others giggle and smile too. She doesn't care if people make fun of her because she shrugs it off like a silly joke. She makes something funny out of everything. Not in a bad way (like making fun of someone in class and disturbing the lesson) but she adds humour and joy to bored souls, like mine.

Vivian's also very understanding. She listens to what you have to say and gives a reasonable response. If you're upset, she'd think of ways to cheer you up. Once I was unhappy about my mom grounding me, and she gave me an enormous bear hug and told me everything was fine and that my mom would un-ground me sooner or later. After that I felt much better. Although she didn't say much, Vivian made me feel as if someone cared.

Someone did care. That someone's name is Vivian Chai.


Grandpa John
by Grant, eighth grade writer

The man whom I idolized as a child was old Grandpa John. He, in my mind, was the most creative, interesting, respectful, and brilliant man I've ever met. He used to amaze me with facts and other interesting things he told me. I recall asking him why he knew of such things, and he would always answer, "I just do."

The inventions that were inside his tool shed were amazing. It was mind-boggling to see all of his past inventions, dating back to when he was just a boy. He kept every single invention, terrible or spectacular, because, according to him, each one was a part of him and a part of his success. The things he invented were often things that were going to make Grandma's and his life easier. He made things like the Toes and Toast, which would quickly paint toenails and make a little snack at the same time. Also, the peel-o-matic, a handy machine that could peel potatoes, apples and even oranges!

As a man of the Richardson family, my grand-daddy was a very respectful man, like my father is and like I aspire to be. He honoured all of his promises, never would purposely embarrass you, and all the decisions he made were fair an un-biased.

This man had the biggest influence on me, and when he passed away a few years ago, it was the saddest moment of my life. In my future, I hope to make Grandpa proud as he looks down on me.

(Click here to open/print Christine and Grant's writing.)

 

 


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