Did you know, there are approximately 98,000 public elementary and secondary schools in the USA today?
Elementary schools are where we teach our children the fundamental skills they need to thrive in their futures. Elementary education must be engaging, communicative, and, above all, fun. Therefore, teaching practical skills like informative writing can benefit from a novel approach.
If you want to make your informative writing lesson plans engaging, we have some of the best ways to introduce children to the craft. Immersive teaching can inspire your students to excel in their informative writing skills.
Read on to find out about four engaging ways to introduce elementary students to informative writing.
1. Use High-Interest Mentor Texts
Children learn by example. This is why you should use high-interest example texts to demonstrate the genre of informative writing.
By reading age-appropriate informative books with your students, you can introduce them to some of the key features, such as titles, headings, labels, illustrations, and facts. This will teach them about informative writing in an authentic and engaging way.
You know your students better than anyone. Pick mentor texts that you know will be interesting for the whole class. Reading together is fun and communicative.
2. Engage With Knowledge
Relate to your students existing knowledge to build an interest in asking and answering real-life questions.
Pick a friendly and approachable topic, and have students share what they already know. Activating background knowledge helps to expose children to new knowledge and ensures better comprehension of skills.
By asking students what they already know about a subject, we invite them to make new connections and make sense of new ideas. Tell your students they are going to learn about space, for example. Watch as they begin to chatter amongst themselves about planets, stars, and rocket ships.
3. Establish Purpose
Introduce children to the purpose of informative writing: Critical thinking with an end to answering questions.
The best informative writing lesson plans should feel student-led. Begin by selecting a broad topic, then ask your students to write down any questions they have on the subject. By recording and sharing their questions with the class, students are given a purpose to learn.
Purpose gives children the motivation to enquire. Enrich your students learning experience by encouraging them to consider topics on a deeper level.
4. Use a “How?” Model
when teaching writing, it is important to model what you expect from your students. Consider using a visual learning task like an idea web to help your students structure their first attempts at informative writing.
The TFC model is a useful “how?” prompt. Encourage students to include a:
- Topic sentence
- Closing sentence
This simple model will demonstrate the basic structure of any informative piece. Structured learning helps children approach new topics — you can learn more here about this subject.
Fun Informative Writing for Elementary Students
These four principles will help your students engage with informative writing as a fun and accessible skill.
By using high-interest texts, engaging with knowledge, establishing purpose, and using a demonstrative learning model, you can channel the naturally inquisitive nature of your students into a rich learning experience.
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