Hi! Future Ticia 2023 here, this is part of a series I used to write with other bloggers, and really that series is defunct, but I like the how to pre-write post, and it’s a really awesome post in that format, but….. So, I’ll revise and add in some odds and ends from time to time in this writing lesson. Back to past Ticia
Most of the themes for Poppins Book Nook I’m very excited about, but I have to admit that this month’s theme of transportation was not one of those themes. Instead my thoughts ran along these lines, “But my kids are no longer in pre-school, they know what kind of things we drive in…
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Then I came up with a ridiculously complicated idea for creating a “transportation through the ages” unit…… Yeah, that didn’t happen because of lack of time, and besides I was sent the most adorable book to read and review, who doesn’t love an Anne Rockwell book?
Our book inspiration for the pre-writing lesson
Truck Stop is the story of a young girl who lives and helps her family run a truck stop. Each morning they get the same people stopping there, and she revels in the sense of familiarity, and worries when one of the regulars doesn’t stop in. It’s a cute book, and how she helps her missing regular is a great story for kids.
In particular, I loved the descriptions she used for the different characters. They weren’t just sixteen wheelers or delivery trucks. No, it was the big silver tank. The words flowed as I read them to the kids.
But, it’s a pre-k book. Quite solidly for that crowd, and a good addition to any library. Here’s the thing, easier books to read can work quite nicely to teach skills. This time, description and brian-storming.
Our pre-writing lesson
We went through and wrote down the place, truck stop, then we came up with all the characters int he book. Slowly we found them all and wrote them in. Then we added in descriptions. Some were easy and predictable, 18 wheels for the 18-wheeler, but some were interesting, Green Gus rattles.
Teaching writing skills: rewriting
Then we talked about writing, and how a good author uses descriptions for their characters.
After our discussion, I set the kids to brainstorm a place and five characters with a description. It helps sometimes to just do one step of a process, and focus solely on that step.
Batman came up with a tank, and several different soldiers who were on it and fighting. The Captain was training. The enemies were scared. It was a good chance for them to think about what is in a specific setting.
Next steps in teaching writing skills:
That really depends on what you want to do. I plan to have them draw a picture using their brainstorm. This keeps it low-key and not scary for early reluctant writers.
Or, while teaching writing skills you could also teach about different writing styles. Have them write a short descriptive piece. Don’t just think of the short story, think of other writing styles you’ve read.
For us, after we’ve finished creating several different brainstorming sessions, where I’m going to move on to the next step in the writing process and teach a rough draft.