The Common Core is raising standards for students and teachers across the country by pushing writing instruction to be text-based, a skill imperative to succeed in college and the workplace. This shift begins as early as first grade, when students are encouraged to write narratives that build on textual knowledge, as opposed to the traditional “write about your weekend” prompt. As the Reading Coordinator, K-12, I want to help my colleagues transition to the Core, and as I noted in yesterday’s post, the Literacy Design Collaborative (LDC) is a great place to begin.

This morning I examined all the narrative writing templates on LDC and adapted the examples for elementary students. If you teach elementary, you’ll see the difference in expectations for narrative writing right away. Embrace the shift and help students to build content knowledge in writing, it’s a skill that will help them to succeed across the content area. Feel free to use the examples below.

Narrative Template Tasks

 

 

Task 26 Template: After researching ________ (informational texts) on ________ (content), write a ________ (narrative or story) that describes ________ (content). 

 

 

Task 26 ELA Example: After researching reference books on healthy eating, write a short play that describes ways to eat healthy foods.

 

Task 26 Social Studies Example: After researching guides on Washington DC, write a fictional narrative about a trip you took to Washington DC.

 

 

Task 27 Template: [Insert question] After reading ________ (literature or informational texts), write a ________ (narrative or substitute) from the perspective of ________ (content). 

 

 

Task 27 ELA Example: How do characters send a message in a story? After reading Ping write a narrative from the perspective of the boat master. Use imagery to develop a narrative effect.

 

Task 27 Social Studies Example: What can historical accounts teach us about someone’s struggle? After reading historical documents and accounts about The Trail of Tears, write a narrative from the perspectives of a Choctaw. Use dialogue to convey multiple storylines.

 

 

Task 28 Template: After researching ________ (informational texts) on_____ (content), write a ________ (narrative or substitute) that relates ________ (content) and the events that ________ (content).  Use ________ (stylistic devices) to develop your work.

 

 

Task 28 ELA Example: After researching articles and biographies on WWII veterans, write a short biography that relates the story of a person with courage and the events that influenced this person the most and in what ways.

 

Task 28 Social Studies Example: After researching historical documents on the Revolutionary War, write a story about the night of Paul Revere’s famous ride. Use transitions to help move the sequence.

 

 

 

Task 29 Template: [Insert question] After reading ________ (literature or informational texts) about ________ (content), write a ________ (narrative or substitute) that relates ________ (content).  Use ________ (stylistic devices) to develop your work.

 

 

Task 29 ELA Example: What was it like to live in the Victorian age in England? After reading accounts about life in the Victorian age, write a story about a year in the life of a Victorian family.

 

Task 29 Social Studies Example: What place in the world would you like to visit? After reading maps and articles about a place you would like to visit, write a short narrative pretending that you were there for a day. Use imagery and sensory language to develop your work.

Narrative Writing the Common Core Way

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