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Can anyone offer advice on teaching paragraphs that pupils will easily pick up and remember?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by rabsey1, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. Hi - i currently teach year 4 and our writing target this half term is paragraphs, my more able children have got it no problems, but i am having trouble in enabling my lower ability children to grasp why and when - can anyone suggest anything that has worked for them - i would really appreciate it
    thanks
     
  2. Hi - i currently teach year 4 and our writing target this half term is paragraphs, my more able children have got it no problems, but i am having trouble in enabling my lower ability children to grasp why and when - can anyone suggest anything that has worked for them - i would really appreciate it
    thanks
     
  3. teacherman2

    teacherman2 New commenter

    You could always try:

    http://www.paigntoncommunitycollege.com/SWINE_FLU/Tip%20Top%20Paragraphing.pdf
     
  4. teacherman2

    teacherman2 New commenter


    That is what I do with Y5.

    Meanwhile, you can get good resources, of course, from Primary Resources.

    Hope this helps,

    Rob.

    http://www.4shared.com/dir/V2Mv8DIE/sharing.html
     
  5. I had a breakthrough not so long ago with my lower ability Year 6s, using the ideas above and the phrase "one idea per paragraph". It just seemed to click for them, so I introduce it to every class I teach.
    Obviously we built up to it by looking atother people's writing and identifying what each paragraph was about. As far as simple texts go, BBC Newsround has plenty of age-appropriate articles you could look at. The paragraphs are usually short and tightly defined.
    We also looked at paragraphs in narrative and NCR - the latter is an especially good genre for hammering home the point.
    They quite enjoyed reading a text and competing to see who could summarise a paragraph in the fewest words, after I had shown them a few examples.
    If your group is up for it - you could give them all different paragraphs from well known stories. They would walk around introducing themselves, trying to find the other paragraphs from their story, before ordering themselves for a brief retelling.
    Finally, we also planned writing paragraph by paragraph. For example - not saying I would necessarily do this with Year 6s! - you could:
    • Write a paragraph describing the big, bad wolf
    • Introduce the three little pigs
    • House 1
    • House 2
    • House 3 / ending
    Hope some of that helps,
    Gentleben
     
  6. Just realised that I didn't fully explain the last point... I meant - plan the first paragraph then stop the class to discuss and make sure they've got it. Repeat with the remaining paragraphs.
     
  7. Thank you all for your help- lots for me to be getting on with before the end of term!!
     
  8. Benbamboo

    Benbamboo Occasional commenter

    The best activity on paragraphs I have done was when doing report writing. Instead of writing them we filmed a news report in groups of 4.
    2 people were news readers
    1 person was the camera man
    1 person was in charge of the teleprompter.
    We looked at a sample of a news report that I had typed out - they watched the report then we watched it again with the text (structured into paragraphs). As a class we then looked at each paragraph and the reason for it - introdutions (5Ws), what happened (facts), spectator opinions (reported/direct speech) and a final paragraph looking to the future (conclusion).
    The children then wrote their news reports onto whiteboards, one side per paragraph, which we then took into our ICT lesson and typed up into Powerpoint or textease presenter, again one paragraph per slide. Each group worked together to produce the report with each person in charge of a paragraph. This was to get them to focus on one thing to go into their paragraph and not ramble on. Mixed ability groups meant they could help each other.
    When it came to recording each person had a specific role and each role was treated with equal importance. The slides were played on the interactive whiteboard with the presenters facing it looking past the camera. The teleprompter had to focus so they knew when each paragraph was coming to an end so they could change the slide. The cameraman had to pay attention to know which presenter to zoom in on. By the end of it most children (I wish I could say all) had a much better understanding of paragraphs and had barely even realised they were doing English.
     
  9. Alan Peat has some great ideas for fiction and non fiction. Really useful/simple planning format where each division is a new paragraph.
    It's worth a look.
     
  10. I always say 'it's like scene selection on a DVD'.
     
  11. Some great ideas that Ill be using next year thanks! When writing stories I often get my class to plan using a storyboard - basically a page split into six (or less/more depending on ability) boxes. In each box they draw one 'scene' from their story and write a few sentences about what is happening. Then each box becomes a paragraph of their story. This worked well with my Year 6 class whose stories often lacked structure. I've also used post-its successfully.
    C

     

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