A Literature-Inspired Writing Lesson from WritingFix
Focus Trait: SENTENCE FLUENCY Support Trait: IDEA DEVELOPMENT

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Painting Places
with Words

borrowing Steinbeck's sentence fluency to describe a new setting

 


Student Writer Instructions:

First, you will work with friends to write an "impersonation paragraph."  This paragraph needs to borrow the verbs and sentence structures found in Mr. Steinbeck's opening two paragraphs of Of Mice and Men.

Start with Mr. Steinbeck's first sentence, and apply its structure to a completely different setting.  The button below might give you some ideas for settings you can write about.  From that point on, you can pick and choose from ANY of Steinbeck's sentences, and you don't have to go in order.  Try to use strong adjectives, texture and color words, and powerful images in your impersonation paragraphs.

You will read your group paragraphs aloud.  The other groups will search Mr. Steinbeck's first two paragraphs and guess which of his sentences your sentences impersonate.

Your teacher will keep a list of all the settings the other groups describe with their impersonation paragraphs.

Next...you will put Mr. Steinbeck's words away.  You will put your group's paragraph away.  Then, you will choose any of the settings from your teacher's list.  Alone, you will write a one- or two-paragraph description of the place you have chosen.  Although you can't directly impersonate Steinbeck this time, you may borrow sentence fluency ideas and word choice ideas that you should have become more aware of when writing your impersonation paragraph.

Share your individual paragraphs with a friend or with your original group.  Have your "audience" find places where Mr. Steinbeck influenced your writing.

Interactive Choices for Writing:

If you're struggling to start, click the buttons below for some ideas that might inspire you to launch your piece of writing.

     

  

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