August 10, 2017
by Jasmine Gibson

Lesson plan

Here’s What I Think!

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Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students will write an opinion paragraph using linking words.

(5 minutes)
  • Ask students to close their eyes and imagine the most amazing place the class could go for a field trip. When they have a place in their mind, ask them to show a thumbs-up.
  • Explain that today the students are going to get a chance to write an opinion paragraph that convinces you to take them to a particular place for a field trip.
(10 minutes)
  • Ask, “What is an opinion?” Have students share their ideas with the group. Clarify as needed by saying, “An opinion is your view or feeling about something.”
  • Define a paragraph by saying, “A paragraph is what we call several sentences about the same idea or topic. A paragraph begins with a topic sentence, then has several supporting sentences, and finally, a concluding sentence.”
  • Share one of your favorite places to go on a field trip, and supply several supporting reasons for your opinion.
  • Model the paragraph structure as follows (this example uses the aquarium as the best field trip location):

    • Topic Sentence: I feel very strongly that the aquarium is the best place to go on a field trip.
    • Supporting Sentence 1: There are many colorful sea creatures at the aquarium.
    • Supporting Sentence 2: The best thing about the aquarium is the touch tank.
    • Supporting Sentence 3: Also, the aquarium is interesting because you can learn facts about many animals.
    • Concluding Sentence: If you love animals, you will love going to the aquarium, too!
  • Explain that you just wrote a paragraph where you gave an opinion and supplied your reasoning for the opinion using supporting sentences.
(10 minutes)
  • Ask students to share out where they think the best field trip locations are.
  • Record student thinking on a chart, writing “The best place to go on a field trip is...”
  • Have students choose one location from the board and discuss with a partner one reason the location is the best. Have them write up their reason on a sticky note and then attach to the chart by their location.
  • Model taking one of those locations and the associated reasons and turning it into a paragraph with help from the students.
  • Point out the use of linking words such as “because” and “also” in the model paragraph.
(20 minutes)
  • Pass out the Field Trip Opinion worksheets and have the students use them to create their own paragraphs.


  • Provide students with sentence frames to use while writing their opinion paragraphs. Sentence frames can be pre-written on the board using sentence strips, or copied for individual use.


  • For advanced students who finish early, have them complete the The Best Food and The Best Vacation worksheets.
(5 minutes)
  • Collect student work samples to assess whether students are able to include all parts of a paragraph and are able to share an opinion.
(5 minutes)
  • Invite 2-5 students to share their opinion paragraph with the class.
  • Ask students to think about whether they are convinced that each speaker's field trip location is the best as they listen to the work samples read aloud.
  • Close by telling the students you will carefully read over each paragraph and consider each field trip location carefully.

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