A Picture Book Poetry Lesson from WritingFix
Focus Trait: ORGANIZATION Support Trait: VOICE

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Student Writing Samples from this Lesson


On-line Publishing:

Publish your students at our Ning!
(You must be a member of our "Writing Lesson of the Month" ning to post.)


Teacher's Guide:

Going Beyond
"And They All Lived Happily Ever After."

playing with point of view while crafting a story's ending

This lesson was built for WritingFix after being proposed by NNWP Teacher Consultant
Kelly Nott
and her husband Dane Nott.

The intended "mentor text" to be used when teaching this on-line lesson is the picture book Once Upon a Cool Motorcycle Dude by Kevin O'Malley. Before writing, students should listen to and discuss the writing style of this books' authors.

To our loyal WritingFix users: Please use this link if purchasing Once Upon a Cool Motorcycle Dude from Amazon.com, and help keep WritingFix free and on-line. We thank you!

A note for our teacher users: These lessons are posted so that you may borrow ideas from them, but our intention in providing this resource is not to give teachers a word-for-word script to follow. Please, use this lesson's big ideas but adapt everything else. And adapt it recklessly; that's how one becomes an authentic writing teacher.

Teacher Instructions & Lesson Resources:

Pre-step (before sharing the published model): Choose a boy and a girl who will embody the characters’ VOICE by rehearsing, reading, and dressing up as the Princess and the Cool Motorcycle Dude from the book. We recommend that you send a note home and/or contact the families to ensure that the students have the ability to dress up and come prepared for their part because we found that it was crucial for the initial student engagement. **Even older kids have fun playing these parts!

Step one (sharing the published model):  Introduce the title of the book and the two characters (Princess and Cool Motorcycle Dude) to the class. To ensure good listening, ask the class to do the following during transitions between the two characters speaking. The girls can make a princess soft “sigh” tilting their heads sideways with two hands across their cheek and the boys make a cool motorcycle dude sound “vroom, vroom” while using their hands to pretend they are writing a motorcycle.

The two selected students (Princess Tenderheart and the Cool Motorcycle Dude) will then read the first 12 pages of the book.

After the first part of the book is read, interactively discuss and complete the story elements graphic organizer. This will lead the students to select an original problem and solution while they utilize the book's characters and setting in an original story they will be writing.

Step two (introducing models of writing):   In small groups, have your students read and respond to any or all of the student models that come with this lesson.  The groups will certainly talk about the organization, since that's the focus of this lesson, but you might also have your students talk about the voice in the writing too.

  • We're looking for student samples for all grade levels for this prompt!  Help us get some, and we'll send you a free resource for your classroom!  Contact us at publish@writingfix.com for details.

WritingFix Safely Publishes Students from Around the World! In 2008, we first began accepting students samples from teachers anywhere who use this lesson. Hundreds of new published students now go up at our site annually!

We're currently looking for student samples for other grade levels for this lesson!  Help us obtain some from your students, and we'll send you a free resource for your classroom!  Visit this lesson's student samples page for details.


Step three (thinking and pre-writing): Refer students back to the class's completed story elements graphic organizer. Teachers may wish to allow more advanced writers to write about an original character as seen fit. Upon completing the story elements graphic organizer, students will choose a character’s point of view, a couple of events, a solution to the story’s problem, and a “satisfying” conclusion that links back to the beginning.

They will then use the Story Conclusion Graphic Organizer to develop their ideas by adding descriptive details, dialogue, etc. From this graphic organizer, students will write a first draft of their original story ending.

If you have your students draft their stories on this two-page rough-drafting sheet, then they can self-evaluate their own organization skills using the checklist on page two.

Share Original Graphic Organizers (for Pre-Writing)
from Your Teaching Toolbox.

We share graphic organizers with our peers, we find them in books, and we think we should also be able to find tried-and-true ones online at WritingFix. This year, if you create an original graphic organizer (or adapt one of ours) when you teach this page's lesson, and post it, we might just end up publishing it directly here at WritingFix, and we will post it here, giving you full credit.

  • Original graphic organizers for specific lessons, like this one, can be submitted as an attachment at this link. Look for the "Reply to this Box" beneath the post. To be able to post, you will need to be a member of our free Writing Lesson of the Month Network.

Step four (revising with specific trait language):  One tool for revision is provided below.  To promote response and revision to rough draft writing, attach WritingFix's Revision and Response Post-it® Note-sized templates to your students' drafts.  Make sure the students rank their use of the trait-specific skills on the Post-it® Note-sized templates, which means they'll only have one "1" and one "5."   Have them commit to ideas for revision based on their Post-It rankings.  For more ideas on WritingFix's Revision & Response Post-it® Note-sized templates, click here.

Share Original Revision Techniques or
Adaptations from Your Toolbox.

Inspired by Barry Lane's Reviser's Toolbox, the WritingFix website encourages its teacher users to adapt our lessons, especially the tools of revision we have posted here. If you create an original revision tool (or adapt one of ours) when you teach this page's lesson, and post it, we might just end up publishing it directly here at WritingFix, and we will post it here, giving you full credit.

  • Original revision ideas from teacher users of WritingFix can be submitted through copy/paste or as an attachment at this link. Look for the "Reply to this Box" beneath the post. To be able to post, you will need to be a member of our free Writing Lesson of the Month Network.

Step five (editing for conventions):  After students apply their revision ideas to their drafts and re-write neatly, require them to find an editor.   If you've established a "Community of Editors" among your students, have each student exchange his/her paper with multiple peers.  With yellow high-lighters in hand, each peer reads for and highlights suspected errors for just one item from the Editing Post-it.  The "Community of Editors" idea is just one of dozens and dozens of inspiring ideas that is talked about in detail in the Northern Nevada Writing Project's Going Deep with 6 Trait Language Workbook for Teachers.

Step six (publishing for the portfolio):  The goal of most lessons posted at WritingFix is that students end up with a piece of writing they like, and that their writing was taken through all steps of the writing process. After revising, invite your students to come back to this piece once more during an upcoming writer's workshop block.  The writing started with this lesson might become even more polished for final placement in the portfolio, or the big ideas being written about here might transform into a completely different piece of writing. Most likely, your students will enjoy creating an illustration for this writing as they ready to place final drafts in their portfolios.

Interested in publishing student work on-line? You might earn a free classroom resource from the NNWP! We invite teachers to teach this lesson completely, then share up to three of their students' best revised and edited samples at our ning's Publish Student Writers group.

To submit student samples for this page's lesson, click here. You won't be able to post unless you are a verified member of this site's Writing Lesson of the Month ning.

Learn more about author Kevin O'Malley and his books by clicking here!

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