Amy Fornecker ELD 308 Oct.

20th, 2011 Lesson Set #2 Lesson Plan: Writing Mini-lesson Non-Fiction Text Grade: 5 Time: 15 Minutes Standard: Common Core Standards: English Language Arts. Production and Distribution of Writing: W.5.5. With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, rewriting, editing, or trying a new approach. Objective: The students will use reference materials, such as a thesaurus, dictionary, Internet versions of the two, or word charts displayed in the classroom, to revise a minimum of two words in their personal writing. Materials: o The Salem Witch Trials: An Unsolved Mystery From History by Jane Yolen and Heidi Elisabet Yolen Stemple o Thesaurus o Dictionaries o Classroom computer access o Chart Paper Lesson Sequence: 1. Anticipatory set: o “Friends, do you remember the book that we have been reading together in class by Jane Yolen and her daughter Heidi? Can someone tell me something we have been focusing on in this book? Yes, difficult vocabulary words, and what kind of strategies can we use to help us find the meaning of these words? Yes, we can ask for help from a friend who may know the meaning, consult a dictionary, or use the context clues that the author provides for us in the sentence in which the word is found. 2. State objective and purpose: o “Today we will learn how to use reference materials to make our own word choices more interesting. Now that we all know how to use some reading strategies to help uncover the meaning of words we don’t know, we can begin to learn how to write the way Jane Yolen writes. What is something Jane Yolen and her daughter added to their writing that you

would like to add to your own? Yes, using interesting words in our writing to excite and intrigue our readers. 3. Teach and model: o Write the following paragraph on chart paper, and say “I wrote this paragraph the other day, would someone like to read it out loud for the class?” o Sample paragraph: “I went to the grocery store to buy a small container of milk for my cereal, and the store clerk told me that I would have to wait because there was a small supply of milk that week and the store had run out.” o “When we use certain words more than once, they begin to loose their meaning. For example, in my paragraph is there a word that I probably used to many times? Yes, I used the word small twice. What should be the next thing I do? Yes, I could substitute small for another word? Give me an example? Why do strong writers like to use different and interesting words in their writing?” o I will then write the word small onto the chart paper and ask the class to list some words that mean the same thing, but are more interesting. o “Sometimes when I am writing I know that a word I have used could be substituted for another more interesting word, but I just cannot think of one at the moment. So, I use a thesaurus to help me come up with another word with the same meaning. Let’s look up the word small in the thesaurus and see what words are provided for us.” o Write the additional synonyms that were not mentioned by the class onto the chart paper. o “How is a thesaurus similar and different from a dictionary?” Yes, a thesaurus is like a dictionary because it allows us to look up certain words, but it is different because we do not look up the meaning of words in a thesaurus, instead we look up alternative words that mean the same thing.” 4. Guided practice: o “Now we will use the word we determined the meaning of yesterday, can anyone tell me what that word was? Yes, it was convicted. What did we decide was the definition of convicted? Yes, to find someone guilty of something in a court of law. o Pass out a thesaurus to each group of two students, and make sure each student has his or her reader’s notebook out. o “With a partner, look up the word convicted and write down, in your reader’s notebook, a list of alternative words that you find in the thesaurus or think of on your own that could replace the word convicted in your writing.”  Potential examples: Condemn, sentence, doom, caught, culpable, delinquent, liable, reprehensible and imprison.

o Now, ask students to list their examples, while you write them down on a piece of chart paper. “I am going to hang this list on the wall, so that you can use it as a reference if you find it useful for your own writing.” 5. Independent Practice/Assessment: o “Today, when your are writing in Writer’s Workshop, I would like you to circle at least two, but as many as you find necessary, words that you feel should be substituted with a more interesting word. Next, look the circled word up in the thesaurus and change it to whatever word you feel works best with the style and theme of your writing. Strong writers strive to make their writing sophisticated and interesting, so as strong writers that is your goal as well today.” 6. Closure: o “Why is it important that we consult a thesaurus while we are writing? Great, now that we all understand why making our writing more sophisticated is important let’s begin applying this strategy to our own writing!” o Assessment: Similar to the reading mini-lesson, I will assess students understanding of the lesson through a summative assessment, I will look at their reader’s notebook to gain insight into the examples that they listed. If I believe that they could list more examples, I will ask them to do so or provide some examples of my own to demonstrate that there are lots of synonyms we can use in our writing. Also, students will be formatively assessed throughout the lesson through the groupdiscussion, conferring with students, and answering any necessary questions that the class may have. Reflection Reading Mini-Lesson: 5th Grade Overall this was a very successful lesson, and I was able to learn a lot from the experience. First, the extensive amount of planning that occurred prior to the actual lesson significantly helped me throughout. For example, I felt much more comfortable in front of the class than I have in the past, and this allowed me to focus on the students learning much more than myself. Myself feeling much more comfortable teaching in front of the class is most definitely attributable to the amount of planning I put into this lesson, and also the warm and inviting environment of Mrs. Collin’s classroom. Moreover, my mini-lesson went very well

and the students were all very engaged, interactive, and responsive throughout the lesson. After reflecting upon the lesson, there are two things that occurred that I feel would be beneficial for me to work on. Firstly, I must be much more consistent throughout the lesson. For example, I did not stick to what I said in particular instances, such as “I will take one more response.” It would be advantageous for me to make sure that I maintain consistency in what I say to student’s, otherwise they will be left confused about my expectations for them. It is incredibly important to me that I instill a great deal of independence in my student’s one day, and in order to succeed with that goal I must make sure that they are always aware of my expectations, and that they are made clearly and consistently. Secondly, I believe I should have prepared much more than I did for any potential misconceptions student’s may have. For example, I wrongfully assumed that the class would know the importance of dropping the suffix for some words when looking them up in the dictionary. Also, I forgot to address the issue that some words will not mean the same thing when the suffix is dropped and I believe this may have confused some of the students a bit. Overall, the lesson went very well and I am very happy with the outcome. Most importantly, the student’s appeared to have thoroughly enjoyed and learned from the lesson, thus making me feel one step closer to being a teacher. In summation, after this lesson was completed and I had some time to reflect on it, I was able to appreciate the transition I made from focusing much less on myself and my role in the lesson, into shifting my focus from myself onto the student’s learning and allowing their learning to dictate the overall success of the lesson. This

transition shows a lot of growth in myself, and I am very pleased that I had the opportunity to grow a great deal throughout this semester.