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Pen Pals Activity

What standards will this assignment meet?

Quality Standard II: Teachers establish a safe, inclusive and respectful learning environment for a diverse
population of students.
Quality Standard III: Teachers plan and deliver effective instruction and create an environment that
facilitates learning for their students.

Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education

8.22 (2) (c) implement effective teaching strategies, which include a wide variety of linguistic experiences
for second-language students.
8.22 (3) The educator of linguistically diverse students is knowledgeable about language teaching
methodology and instructional techniques for teaching a wide range of linguistically diverse students, K-12,
founded on scientifically-based research and proven and effective applications; content based strategies;
identification, selection, evaluation, design and adaptation of appropriate instructional materials; and child
and adolescent literature from various cultures, and is able to:
Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education: 8.22 (3) (c) plan and implement instruction so that it is
systemic, sequential, well-articulated, and delivered in an engaging environment. 8.22 (3) (d) select and
utilize instructional materials and resources that are age, grade level, and language proficiency appropriate,
aligned with the curriculum, English language proficiency standards, and English language arts content
standards, to maintain and/or improve student achievement.

Grade level: Second

Content Area: Writing and Composition
Colorado Academic Standard:
3. Appropriate spelling, capitalization, grammar, and punctuation are used and applied
when writing
b. Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization,
punctuation, and spelling when writing. (CCSS: L.2.2)
WIDA Standard:
English Language Development Standard 2: English language learners communicate
information, ideas and concepts nexessary for academic success in the content area of
Language Arts
Overview of Activity (explanation/instructions) - Be detailed enough for a substitute
to use this in your absence:
Each student will be assigned a Pen Pal from another school. This activity would be the
start of a Pen Pal unit. Students will be taught how to write letters with specific focus on
grammar, punctuation, spelling, and capitalization. Students will be given a letter
template (see artifacts) and a letter guidelines sheet with tips and ideas to think about
when writing a letter. The students assignment will be to first brainstorm their ideas in
the all about me chart (see artifacts), then to start their first letter draft using the letter
template. Then students will revise and edit their letters. Lastly, students will type up their
letters and get them ready to send to their pen pals!

Justification for the Activity (with citations from the readings):

This activity supports ELL Literacy because it gets the students practicing interactive and
independent writing. Independent writing is writing done by ELLs. This activity provides
scaffolding by giving students the opportunity to write, to practice what they have
learned, and to move on to new concepts. A big part of this activity is the prewriting
process. Students get their ideas together and determine their purpose of the writing as
well as their audience (which is already given to them). Providing opportunities for
ELLs to write for authentic purposes and for authentic audiences is important to teaching
all aspects of writing, including planning, writing, revising, and editing (Colombo 228).
This is the next step of this activity. Once students have reread and possibly rewrote parts
of their letters, they are ready to edit. When students have a strong draft in which the
main idea and supporting details are present and well organized, one that meets its
purpose and the needs of its intended audience, they focus on editing for correct spelling,
mechanics, and grammar (Wright 243). This is where the standard aligns with the
activity. Students will spend a good amount of time perfecting their grammar, spelling,
capitalization, and punctuation in their letters.

Artifacts All materials and documents needed to deliver your activity (instructions for students,
handouts, photographs of realia, technology, examples, etc.) Next Page:

Name: _______________

All about Me!

My favorite thing about school is:
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------My Favorites:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Anything Else?