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

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Welcome to this Lesson:

Using 90th
Street's Advice
using four techniques to inspire
quality details in a paragraph that launches a story!

The picture book that inspired this lesson was the 2008-2009 school year's Mentor Text of the Year.

The mentor text:

In the first few pages of Nothing Ever Happens On 90th Street the main character, Eva, receive four pieces of writing advice that your students can use all year long!

Greetings, fellow teachers! My name is Corbett Harrison, and in 2001, I helped the Northern Nevada Writing Project launch this WritingFix website. For ten years, we sponsored lesson-building workshops throughout our region, and the best-of-the-best lessons created by our participants were posted at WritingFix for all teachers to freely access.

The lesson you find here is one that I personally created as a demonstration lesson during our Picture Books as Mentor Texts workshop.

If you enjoy this lesson's big ideas and want to hear more about the work that I do to inspire student writers of all ages, I invite you to visit my personal website--CorbettHarrison.com--where you can access the new lessons and training materials I have been developing since 2009.

Three-Sentence Overview of this Lesson:

First, writers will search for all four pieces of advice that young author, Eva, receives from her neighbors and then uses in her story found in the book Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street. Next, writers will apply the four pieces of advice as they brainstorm details about a person, place, and thing they have chosen to write about.  Finally, writers will each create a descriptive paragraph that interestingly describes the person, place, and thing they have chosen. Teachers: Click here to see the entire lesson plan.


6-Trait Overview for this Lesson:

The focus trait in this writing assignment is idea development; the writer's goal is to create a powerful descriptive paragraph with memorable details.  The support trait in this assignment is word choice; as students attempt to "find the poetry in their pudding," they will be thinking about the power of thoughtful words.


Recipient of the NNWP's
Excellent Writing Lesson Award:

Because of the quality of its resources and ideas, this WritingFix lesson was selected by the Northern Nevada Writing Project as September 2008's Writing Lesson of the Month. It was e-mailed to thousands of teachers who are members of the NNWP's Writing Lesson of the Month Teacher Network.

To quickly access all the WritingFix lessons that have been chosen as "Lesson of the Month," click here to visit the NNWP's archive. You can have a link to a high-quality writing lesson sent to you every month.


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