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

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Student Samples:
Make 'em Laugh or Cry or...

writing a mood-inducing paragraph for the reader

The writing of author Wilson Rawls is inspiring student writers to try new techniques with the traits of word choice and voice.

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Additional Student Samples Being Sought:
Grades 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

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 one, two or 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.

Write to us at publish@writingfix.com and write "Where the Red Fern Grows" in your e-mail's subject line, if you have a student sample to share with us.

Student Sample: Upper Elementary

Visiting Grandma
by Alissa, 5th grade writer

Creak. I paused. Then I reached and grabbed the cold iron black gate. When I opened the gate again, it also creaked. When I slowly walked, in I was careful not to step on anything, especially rats. Then, a rat scurried right under my foot. The crunches of dead leaves under my foot were very annoying. I clutched the flowers in my hand. I walked up to the big rock, but I couldn’t make out anything through the foggy night so I edged closer. A shiny line of silver stood in front of me. I cut it with my finger as if it were a blade. The rock had said:

Here lies Julia Wunsch

A small tear trickled down my face. I stared up at the moon, how big bright and beautiful it was. All of a sudden a deafening howl broke the silence. I froze when I saw about 20 feet away a tail quickly vanished as if into thin air. I wanted to leave as quickly as possible, but then I saw a pair of yellow eyes staring at me.

I dropped the flowers and tried to move, but those eyes seemed to hold me in place. When I finally got the courage, I took a step backwards and then it took a step forward. I hardly dared to breathe. When I took my second step, and it took that step forward, I saw what it was. I couldn’t believe what I saw.

In the moonlight I could make out long gray hair. The beast let a low growl fill the air. I saw his pointy jagged teeth as he bared and snarled. I saw the monster rear back his hind legs, then his front paws. He hung his head low but stiff. A cold chill filled the night, and I shivered and trembled. All of a sudden it charged at me. Closer and closer it came. I tried to move, but I was paralyzed, petrified in fear. When the large mass of body hit me, I fell in the graveyard and everything turned black….

It’s over….or is it?

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