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My Family: Writing Practice
Students will be able to describe what they already know about families by sharing relevant details and facts about their own families.
- The day before your lesson, instruct your students to bring pictures from home that they can paste into a book that they will make.
- Explain to your students that they are going to be discussing families.
- Discuss with your students what family means to them. Potential discussion questions include:
- "How do families work together?"
- "Who is a part of a family, what are some things family members do for each other?"
- "What events do they share with each other?"
- "What are some places they go together?"
- "How are families the same and how are they different?"
- "What do families around the world look like?"
- "How do you feel about your family?"
- List on the board some details students share.
Explicit Instruction/Teacher modeling(15 minutes)
- Show your students a premade book about your family.
- Walk the students through some of the pictures. Identify the people in your pictures and explain each individual person's role in the family. Make sure to describe a special event in your family and the people who participate.
- Explain to your students that they will create a book about their families including relevant details, like the people and their role in the family.
- Instruct your students to draw a picture of their families on the first page of the book. Have them label the individuals in their drawings. Tip: support their writing by listing the names of common familiy members on the board (e.g., uncle, cousin, grandmother, etc.)
- Have students present their drawings to their elbow partners making sure to mention specific details about the picture, like the people, place, and things in the picture. Allow their partners to make suggestions. For example, "Who is this person? I think you should label this person."
Guided Practice(10 minutes)
- Review some suggestions partners made, or just give pointers on details students can add to their picture to make them clear.
- Tell students they will now complete their book about their family.
- Give suggestions to your students about what they could draw. For example, they could choose one page for each family member and draw them on the page. They can also draw that family member's favorite thing.
- Prompt your students to draw a picture of their families celebrating something, such as a holiday or another special event on another page.
- Encourage students to label the page with either the name of the person, the favorite thing, or the location of the person.
Independent working time(20 minutes)
- Have your students pick 4 people to describe with words and photos. Direct your students to think about the roles and responsibilities of each family member. Ask them to think about what their families need or want.
- Instruct your students to paste photos of their families inside their books.
- Offer details and potential examples of family interactions to your students.
- Have these students write a story about an experience that they have had with four of their family members. Encourage them to mention the things they did, all the people involved, and any other details they can think of.
- Give your students a word bank or sentence starters to write about their families.
- Promot students to use information written on the board to help them discuss their own families.
- Support students by allowing them to orally tell you their ideas before sharing the information with their peers.
- Walk around as your students draw or write about their family members. Encourage them to use complete sentences. Provide sentence stems, such as:
- "This is my ____."
- "My ____ is..."
- " ____ is at..."
- "This family member likes to..."
- Make sure that your students write, draw, or discuss how each family member has an important role in the family. Remind them that no two family members are alike! A sentence stem can say, "____ helps the family by..."
Review and closing(10 minutes)
- Have everyone turn and talk to their partner to share their family books aloud. Tell them to clearly express their feelings and ideas about the people, places, and things in their family books.
- Choose a few student volunteers to present their family books to the class. Remind students to share specific details, like how the family members help each other, what events they participate in together, and any specific places or details special to their family.
- After everyone has shared, ask your students to describe how families are different.