Grade: Middle
Subject: Language

#1153. Narrative Writing Lesson

Language, level: Middle
Posted Fri Jul 2 08:17:50 PDT 1999 by Ed Glaser (
Audubon Elementary, Dubuque, Iowa, United States
Materials Required: Software: Inspiration, MS Word, MS Power Pt.
Activity Time: approximately three weeks
Concepts Taught: cooperative learning, process writing, problem solving

Narrative Writing Lesson Plan
Ed Glaser
Sixth Grade

1. Students will learn the stages of process writing.
2. Students will learn to work cooperatively.
3. Students will learn to critique.
4. Students will incorporate software tools to enhance writing and problem solving skills

Materials: Paper, Pencil, Computers (Inspiration, MS Word, MS Power Point) and Clipboards
Suggested Teaching Time: No longer than thirty minutes at a time. Ongoing until all students are finished.

Prewriting Activities:
I. Beanbag Toss Ice Breaker/Warm Up Exercise (Brain Storming)
A. Students throw one beanbag to someone else in the class saying only their name before they toss the bag to.
B. Second time around they need to say what is their favorite food.
C. Third time through the students say their favorite activity before throwing the bag.

Drafting: (Create rough draft webs or outlines on Inspiration software)

II. Inny-outy Circles (two groups of 14 students)
A. Students on the outside of the circle face the students on the inside of the circle.
B. When you say "begin", the students have thirty seconds to establish eye contact with their partner, shake their hand, greet each other, introduce themselves (names only). Rotate after 30 seconds.
C. Repeat "B" until everyone has introduced themselves to people in the circle.
D. Send students to seats. Have the students in paragraph form write the introduction they just gave. Use webs to create rough draft paragraphs from their webs or outlines.

III. Inny-Outy Circle Part II
A. Repeat directions in part II doing the same things but adding the students favorites, dislikes, great memories, family, what they are afraid of, etc.
B. Add these interests to their story webs or outlines.
C. Export outlines in Inspiration to MS Word.
D. Return to seats to draft. Add more paragraphs to the writing they already have.

IV. Critiquing (practice on a teacher creation first)
A. Start with a compliment.
B. Use "I" statements (I think, I like, I wonder, I believe)
C. Direct criticism to the piece of work, not the person creating the piece.
D. Be positive, no put-downs.
E. Be Specific (No "I like it." statements) (Correction: I like _____ because___)

V. Pair Share
A. Students read rough drafts to each person in their group. Listeners practice the rules of critiquing. (Must make at least one suggestion for improvement)
B. Rotate until all students have heard each other's stories. Make notes on rough draft when others give suggestions for improvement.

Revising: (MS Word)

VI. Students work independently to make necessary changes. (homework activity)
VII. Edit and Revise until students are satisfied.
VIII. Cooperative Group Share/Critique

Publishing: (Export from Word to Power Point)

IX. Independent type/write (family technology center activity)
X. Present Power Point Presentations


1. Beanbag Toss
2. Inny-Outy Circle
3. Pair Share/Small Group Share

Developmental Needs:

Cognitive Characteristics
My plan will cater to nearly all of the cognitive characteristics of an adolescent. Students enjoy learning interesting facts about others. My plan encourages a lot of student interaction. This may be problematic for the shy child, but the skills they practice in the inny-outy circles and small groups will be less threatening than other larger group activities.

Emotional Characteristics:
Students will learn about themselves by being helped by others. They will be supported and encouraged in their writing and speaking. It should be a positive experience where they learn a lot about themselves and others.

Physical Characteristics:

The students will be allowed to move around the room quite a bit. They will only spend small amounts of time in their desks.

Social Characteristics:
This lesson will hopefully be motivating to the students as well as informative. Students who despise writing will feel less threatened by not having the teacher leading their paper in the direction he or she wants. The students will have a sense of ownership and pride in their product when they compare their first draft to their last draft.

Character Development:
The focus on the lesson will be on helping each other and complimenting each other in a cooperative setting.

Developmentally Responsive Rationale:

My plan is developmentally responsive because it meets a variety of adolescent needs. If the lesson goes as planned, all students will go away feeling non-threatened, proud, happy and accepted. The movement from one activity to the next will help with the physical characteristics of adolescents. Academically, I will be covering a lot in this lesson and the concepts covered will not only help them in my class, they will take several skills learned with them as they advance in school.