Woohoo, it's here, it's finally here. A new apple watch for me....no. Summer holidays....no. It's our persuasive writing unit. Yes, I really am excited about this, persuasive texts and writing is my favourite unit.
We are just getting started but let's go ahead and take a look at....
Seriously, this book is so stinking cute and there is sooo much you can do with it. On our first read through I stopped before the last animal was revealed, when we just see the shadowy outline of the animal and see Gilbert's reaction. I had my students use the picture clues and what they knew to infer what animal would be revealed next and what would happen between Gilbert and the new pet.
So, of course many of my students thought it would be a cat, but ***SPOILER ALERT*** it is a catfish and they become friends!! My students loved the reveal of the ending of this story!
We did a retell of the story - just to reinforce the skill : )
Then we moved into the beginning stages of persuasive writing. Now it may seem silly to be using this book as part of a persuasive writing unit, since Gilbert doesn't actually do any persuading, but I have found that in Grade 1 you need to take things down to the basics and help build up their understanding of the concept. In Grade 1 you can not assume that they understand a concept or have the same background knowledge. So we start at the beginning - identifying what we want!! This is a simple concept that the students of course have lots of experience with and can make connections to....we will move on to the ways to get what we want...but not quite yet!
I had my students identify what Gilbert wanted and why, something that they want and why and a pet that they would want and why it would be a good pet for them (see - still not at actually persuading - just what we want and why!!).
You can pick up a free copy of the activities we used by clicking the picture.
We started an anchor chart that we are adding to as we learn....
In this book Jake asks his mom for a pet and she agrees immediately (which seems like a crazy thing to do...only she knows what she is about). The trick of course is that some of his ideas are not too practical which his mom calmly points out time and again. We use this book as a springboard for discussing the importance of making sure our want is specific and "do"able. We highlight examining different options and looking at characteristics that make something a good fit.
So we wrote about a pet that would be a good fit and one that would not be a good fit. Our focus - giving reasons why. Click here to pick up a copy.
Yes, you guessed it....our persuasive writing unit is focussing on pets! This book (still!!) does not contain persuasive elements. What it does contain is short (like 2 words short) descriptions of the different types of dogs. We used this book to practice the skill of picking a specific type of dog and generating reasons why it would be a good dog for us. Click here to pick up a copy of the activity.
So that's it so far, the beginning steps of our persuasive writing unit. It may not seem like much yet but we are building the blocks, honestly!! I will be back with the books and activities in the next part of our unit : )
As always, I would love to know....