Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Winter Writing Fun

This week, I am trying to do something fun with my students that will also sharpen their writing skills. We are writing colors of winter poems. This is one of the fun activities that is in my Common Core Winter Holidays Writing Activities.

I am trying to help students practice using sensory images in their writing- to show the reader, rather than tell the reader. First, we start out by doing some brainstorming- we brainstorm the things that we hear, see, smell, taste and touch at this time of year. The students are full of ideas and had a great time with this part. I display the brainstorming chart on the document camera, and then add ideas as the children share them. I then leave the brainstorm up for the whole activity to help students with their writing.

After we brainstorm together, I have students pick one of the ideas that we talked about for each sense. Some creative little bugs add their own ideas in too, and that is fine as long as they are on topic. They fill in a chart where they associate each sensation with a color. For example, some associated the color red with the taste of peppermint candy canes.

Once they've associated a color with each sensation, then they're ready to start on their own poems. I provide a poetry frame for my students because they are English language learners. This helps them to follow the correct format and still use their own ideas.

What they end up with is a poem like this:
Winter is gold, blue, brown, red and silver.
Gold is the warm twinkle of candles in the windows.
Blue is the cold feeling of snow freezing my fingers while I build a snowman.
Brown is the rich, sweet, chocolatey smell of hot chocolate after playing in the snow.
Red is the taste of hot cinnamon candies on my tongue.
Silver is the bring sounding jingle of bells ringing outside stores.
Winter is gold, blue, brown, red and silver.

To make a nice presentation, we finished up by creating and decorating paper coffee mugs and writing our poems inside. Here's what the final product looks like:

Click the button below to get your copy of my Common Core Winter Holiday Writing Activities!

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