Writing Workshop: Informational Essay
We are on the brink of beginning our informational essay unit. We introduced essay writing to the students during our persuasive essay unit and will use the skills they learned to heighten their understandings of the different facets of essay writing.
The children will act as researchers first. They will read and collect information about a topic during Reading Workshop. When collecting information, students will learn how to summarize information in their own words and use quotation marks when using direct information from another source. After completing their research, they will use the now-familiar writing process to develop an idea about that topic, and turn the idea into a draft that they will revise and edit until it becomes a published piece.
As we move through this unit, students will learn how essayists take an idea, based on a topic, and grow thoughts about it. They will apply what they learned in our previous unit to turn an idea into a thesis and present evidence from their research to support their claims. We will use a structured organizer to gather ideas, just as we did with the persuasive essay.
As always, we will continue to work on the mechanics of writing with the students. At this point, there is a clear expectation that writers pay attention to spelling and punctuation. Once students learn how to spell a certain word or use a particular kind of punctuation, we want to see it reflected in their writing, even in notebook entries and first drafts.