Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Creative Learning Commons!

Today, someone asked about books modeling creative writing for 2nd graders.  Wow and kudos. That was one high-expectation teacher!   Some second graders can hardly write, while others need challenge, but why not plant the seed of creativity even as it emerges? 
CCSS standards do not stipulate creative writing in the 2nd grade, but focus more on: Opinion, Informative, and Narrative.  In fact, the word "creative" is only mentioned twice anywhere in the standards: Once in the introduction and once in 11th grade.   Read this CCSS ELA introduction disclaimer: 

So you see, creative writing is not a standard, but they believe it could be an ability based upon what you've taught them. The only thing wrong with that approach is if students never try, how will they ever know they can?  Do they ever make the connection between what they read and trying to replicate that creativity?  

Here are a few lesson ideas aligned with the Common Core that might be more appropriate for 3rd or 4th grade or 5th grade, but if you want to try with 2nd...go for it!  

  • First have them read closely a creative book. (Group them or individually) 
  • Identify characteristics of a "creative book"  or "creative writing" and simplify them down to elements in a checklist which students can look for:

·         Hide your message in a picture
·         Weave in a theme
·         Drama words
·         Color words
·         Words that paint a picture
·         Fancy words 
·         Feeling words
·         Describe rather than state 
*    Foreshadowing (hinting) 

  • Have them read closely to identify those  elements in a book - (There are so many robust book choices so choose ability-appropriate titles.) 
  • Choose a wordless book (examples below) and have students create words for the illustrations. 
  • Choose a great creative book, and cover the words--asking your students to create the narration for the pictures.   Then compare their writing with the original text so they can see (read) the difference and learn from the model.  

I say... if you have time in your library, why not try this? If you are observed, perhaps they will see your students closely reading for details in the text.  The students should be able to share their "text-based answers."  The students will be speaking with "evidence from the text."  Students could be using synonyms and vocabulary tools to add valuable vocabulary to their creations...Go for it!  

No comments:

Post a Comment