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Kids want to be writers. But no one wants to be an “okay” writer. Teachers want all of their students to be the best writers they can be! Great writing starts with great sentences.
For this sentence building/learning activity, arrange young writers in groups of two or three. Each student will need a dry-erase board and Crayola Dry-Erase Crayons.
Ask each child to write a simple three-word sentence across the top of the board. Model a sample sentence on an individual dry-erase board so students can see both the content and appropriate letter size for their own writing. For example a simple sentence might be, “The pony ran.”
Invite students to exchange dry-erase boards with other members of their groups. Each student can rewrite the original sentence, adding or changing one thing to expand (not change) its meaning. Model an example of expanding meaning by rewriting the sample sentence so it now reads, “The pony galloped.” Show children how you wrote the new sentence directly below the original sentence.
Children can continue exchanging boards to build better and better sentences that may include adjectives and adverbs. After several sentence changes, allow children to add a three-word prepositional phrase if they want to. Model an example, “The pony galloped across the field.”
Continue this activity for a set amount of time or until there is no more room to rewrite sentences on the dry-erase boards.
Invite each child to read aloud the original, three-word, simple sentence and the final expanded sentence. Discuss how adding descriptive words and phrases improved the way a reader can imagine the meaning of the sentence. Invite children to depict the meaning of the final sentence in an illustration using Crayola Markers on drawing paper.
Reflect on stories and experiences using feeling and sensing words. With Crayola Dry-Erase Crayons this can be a five-mi
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