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Writing – Week 9 Overview

Grammar: Irregular Plural Nouns

Writing: Informative Article
Spelling: Irregular Plural Nouns

Week 9, Day 41

Write an informative article.

Read the model with the student in the student text.

Informative paragraphs inform the reader about a topic. The example

in the student text is written on the topic of pollution. The reader
clearly sees this in the topic sentence:

Pollution of the ocean by human activities has become a

serious problem.
Writing informative paragraphs are often difficult for fourth graders
because of a few issues. These issues are listed below with some
suggestions to help the student through them.

Issue #1: What do I write about?

Students sometimes have a hard time thinking about a strong topic to

write about. The student may not be connected to current events or
news stories. This age, by the way, is a great age to begin talking to
the student about current issues. Most fourth graders have the mind
power to understand abstractly at this point. So because the student
may be slightly disconnected from topics, he may have a tough start.
He can choose pollution, even though it was the example, but he must
think of other types or places where pollution occurs.

An informative article doesn’t always have to be about a current hot

topic issue. He may write a paragraph informing the reader about…

A president… a monument… a state… a flower… the making of a

crayon… diamond mining…

The possibilities are almost endless… and so can the issues be when
the student goes to find information.

Issue #2: The student chooses a topic, but can’t find the RIGHT

You may want to start the student out with asking them what they
would like to find out about the topic. This is a task you will do on Day
42. Try to have the student narrow the focus a little if the topic seems
too large. If the student chooses to write about the White House, ask
the student, “What about the White House do you want to know?”
Here are some good questions the student may wonder:

How many presidents have lived there?

How many people live there now?

Are pets aloud there? If so, how many?

Can people visit the White House?

How old is the White House?

Why is it painted white?

Who goes grocery shopping for the White House?

As you can see, some of these questions may be easily answered,

while others will be more difficult. One way to help the student with
finding information is by using a search engine like As an
adult, you can monitor and manage the information you are seeing and
print out information for the student to read through. He then can
decide on which articles or paragraphs are the most important.

Issue #3: The student wants to copy information word-for-

Fourth grade is the year, if not earlier, to teach the student about
plagiarism. Plagiarism is the process of copying down information that
does not belong to you, but you claim it. Although the student
probably won’t be selling his informational paragraph for profit, he
should still start to get in the habit of giving credit where it is due. He
should save all of the websites or books where he found his
information to include at the bottom of his paragraph. Encourage the
student to change the wordings of sentences to make them his own
work. Here are a few examples of how to re-word sentences:

Some of these pollutants are things like construction debris, sewage,

chemicals, and garbage which include plastics.

Some pollutants are garbage, plastics, and some chemicals. Sewage

and construction debris are also pollutants.

It is no longer legal to dump garbage, sewage, or hazardous waste, but

so much is already in the water.

States have made it illegal for people to release pollution into waters,
however the damage has already been done.


Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

The student will learn about irregular plural nouns for the next five
lessons. These plurals were briefly mentioned in the parent guide on
Day 36, but will now have the main focus. These plurals have no “rule”
common to all. The student will learn through practice and
memorization this week when and where to recognize them.

Irregular Plural Nouns

You have already learned to form plurals by adding s, es, or ies, to a noun.
Some nouns do not form their plurals this way. Study the rules below
for forming irregular plurals.

The plural of some nouns is created by changing the form

of the word.

Some nouns form their plural by using the same form


Change the form Remains the same

man – men sheep – sheep

child – children deer – deer
tooth - teeth fish - fish

Task 1
The student will now complete this practice task. Here is the answer
key for this:

Read the sentences below. Use the word in parenthesis, but write the
plural form on the line.

1. I saw three _____sheep__________(sheep) in the field.

2. Some _______men_______(man) tried to round them up.

3. There were _______children__________(child) standing nearby.

4. Next some ________deer________(deer) came on the scene.

5. The _______children_____(child) left to go catch some


Task 2: Study More Examples:

With the student, review the list below. Read each word out loud, its
plural form, and have the student repeat it back to you.
Singular Plural

crisis crises
woman women
foot feet
mouse mice
ox oxen
goose geese
axis axes
fungus fungi
die dice

Singular Plural

salmon salmon
fowl fowl
bison bison


Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

Pretest Day
1. Give student the pretest. Say each spelling word out loud.

2. The student will write all 10 words down on a sheet of paper.

3. Check the spelling words. Any words the student missed will
need to be on his new list.

4. The student will write his new list of words (any words missed on
the pretest).

5. The student will choose more words from the extra word list to
make a list of 10 words.

Here is this week’s spelling list on irregular plural nouns:

Basic Words Challenge Words

1. axis/axes appendix/appendices

2. bison/bison analysis/analyses
3. buffalo/buffaloes bacterium/bacteria

4. moose/moose cactus/cacti

5. calf/calves child/children

6. crisis/crises deer/deer

7. die/dice dwarf/dwarves

8. echo/echoes fireman/firemen

9. fish/fish foot/feet

10. fungus/fungi goose/geese

Week 9, Day 42

Brainstorm about an informative article.

The student will brainstorm today about an informative article of his
choice. He will follow the directions in the student text, which have
him working on a few things today. Here are the items the student
needs to complete:

1. Research a topic for an informative article

2. Write the main focus in the middle oval on the brainstorming sheet.

3. Write at least 7 facts surrounding the bubble.

4. Write a topic sentence (engagement sentence) for the article.

5. Decide the order of the facts and write them down.


Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

Task 1: Practice Irregular Plurals

Read the paragraph below. Insert the plural of the noun in parenthesis.

My family took a trip overseas to a country called Norway. We stayed in

a house on the fjord where we saw several _____men_______(man) and
___women_____(woman) catching ____fish____(fish). There were
___geese________(goose) in the yard. When we went out one evening for a
drive we saw three ____moose___(moose) on the road that were as big as our
car. I wanted to go for a hike up on the mountain to find some
_____sheep________(sheep), but was a little nervous after seeing the
____moose______(moose). When we actually climbed up we felt as though we
were the only __people___(person) in the world.

Task 2: Now look at the underlined words in the paragraph. Make sure
you write the correct form of the word (singular or plural) that makes sense
on the line. Some are already correct.

After going on vacation I wanted to try to do some hiking around home.

My mom took me to a large wooded area far from the noise of the____traffic_
(traffic) that runs through my town. The first example of wildlife I saw was a
family of __mice_____ (mouse). There was a stream, but I didn’t see any
____fish_____(fish). There was some _____fungus__(fungus) on the rocks. After
a while we did see a few _____deer____(deer) walking by. We got cold and our
_____feet_____(foot) got wet, so we headed for home. I thought I saw a
_____goose______ ( goose), but I might have imagined it.

(symbol for reteaching / extensions) RETEACHING /


The student needs / wants more practice with irregular plural

word forms.

1. This site provides an interactive matching game of singular nouns

and their irregular counter parts:

2. Here is another game for the student to play to practice this skill:

Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

The student will be making flash cards for his spelling words today.
Here are the directions as seen in the student textbook:

Make word cards by writing the singular form in the first column
and the plural form in the second. Cut across the bottom of each word,
but not down the middle between them. Fold the cards on the
middle line so that you can see only one form at a time.

(symbol for extensions) EXTENSIONS:



1. Timed Spelling Activity

Materials: Timer, Spelling Flash Cards

Directions: The student sets the timer to start. Press start and ask the
student the spellings on the words. When the student is done spelling
all of the words on the cards, press the stop button on the timer. Write
down the student’s time. Complete this activity during the next few
lessons to practice the student’s spelling words.

2. Categories

Materials: Spelling Flash Cards

Directions: Have the student read each spelling word out loud. Then
have him put each word in a row under a category he will write on
paper. For example, this is what one column may look like:


3. Artist’s Canvas

Materials: Crayons, or other art medium, Spelling Flash Cards

Directions: The student will look at his 10 spelling flash cards and will
think about a small picture that can be drawn for each one. For
example, for the card with “deer” on it, he would draw a deer or a hoof
print. Visual learners will enjoy this activity.

Week 9, Day 43

Write the first draft of an informative article.

Review the brainstorming sheet out loud with the student. When the
student is organized and ready to write, allow him to start on the first
draft of the informative article. He will write this in the student text.


Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

Task 1: Practice the Skill:

Read the sentences to find the plural nouns. Some are regular and some are
irregular. Underline all plural nouns then place each in the chart where it

1. My teacher made up a board game complete with cards, dice and animal

2. Several people wanted to play it just because they love animals.

3. The rules stated that we could use the glossaries and appendices from our
4. The markers included a few types of fish which no one wanted to be.

5. After he rolled the dice and took a card Paul got the first question on the
American bison.

6. When it was my turn the question turned out to be something about mice.

7. We learned that octopi are very intelligent and that the singular of bacteria
is bacterium.

8. Did you know that moose are excellent swimmers?

9. Whether it was geese, salmon, or oxen we loved looking for the answers
and learning new facts.

10. That was some game about wild game!

Regular Plurals Irregular Plurals

cards dice

markers people

animals appendices

glossaries fish

types bison

swimmers mice









Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

The student will write his words 3 times each, using cursive at least
one time.

Week 9, Day 44

Edit an informative article.

The student will have an editing checklist to go through. Here it is:

• Does your “engagement” really grab the reader? Highlight it.

• Did you group similar facts remembering to make them separate


• Do you have a topic sentence for each paragraph that tells what will be
your focus in that paragraph? Are there at least 3 other sentences?

• Does it have a finishing statement or does it just trail off? Highlight it.


Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

The student is given a box of singular nouns. He needs to use at least
5 of them in sentences. Here are the plural forms of those words.

Five of the following must have been used.

1. Bison

2. Moose
3. Crises

4. Men

5. Children

6. Scissors

7. Mice

8. People

9. Feet



Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

Choice Day
For choice day, allow the student to choose one of the following:

1. Have someone practice your words with you using your word cards. Go
over the ones you missed at least 3 times.

2. Write sentences using the singular and plural in each.

3. Take a practice test, and then write the ones you missed 3x.

Week 9, Day 45
Write an informative article.
Today the student will transfer the edited informative article to a final


Write irregular plural nouns correctly.

The student will take a quiz on finding irregular plurals in a paragraph.

Assessing Your Knowledge

Irregular Plurals

Underline all the irregular plurals in the paragraph. You should find 10.

We went to a party where we played some crazy games. One was

about fishing, but they had a tank of live fish! The water spilled over onto our
feet as we tried to catch the goldfish and angelfish with nets. The next game
involved chasing geese around the yard to “tag” them. The people were so
funny slipping and falling. The scavenger hunt was great as we looked for
deer and moose, but they weren’t live ones. The final game was a race to
pick the fungi from the garden to make a salad quickly. As we got into our car
to go home I had to laugh as I saw two men posing as statues on the lawn.
What an unusual event!


Spell irregular plural nouns correctly.

Spelling Test:
Today the student will take a test on the 10 spelling words that have
been practiced all week. This will be an assessment. Say each spelling
word out loud for the student and use it in a sentence. Here is an
“Spelling word number one is after. After. After I wash the dishes, I
will dry them. After. Number two is scratch. Scratch. I will scratch my
back when it is itchy. Scratch.”

Give the student at least 10 seconds to write each spelling word. It is

acceptable to repeat any or all of the words as you go if the student
needs it. This will be assessed.

At the bottom of the test page, you will notice a place where students
are to write sentences. When the student writes the sentence,
everything about that sentence should be correct. Capitalization,
spelling, and end punctuation are all counted with these sentences.

Here are the suggested dictation sentences for the spelling test:

The echo of the child was heard for miles.

All of the echos were loud.

If you are comfortable with making up the sentences on your own, this
will be a possibility throughout the program. You will need to choose
any two words from the student’s spelling list. Think of simple
sentences for the child to spell. The most “challenging” word in the
sentence should be the spelling word itself.