1. Important Poems: Children write their own Important Poems based on The Important Book by Margaret Wise Brown.
I use this technique often. After we have finished a unit, then I have them write an important poem to show what they remember. An important poem example: The most important thing about a pencil is you write with it. It has lead and an eraser. You write spelling words with it. You write notes to Junie B. Jones (character by Barbara Parks that 2nd graders love to read about) with it. You get a new one for 25 cents from the office. But the most important thing about a pencil is you write with it.
Basically, the kids pick one fact for the beginning and the ending sentence (same fact) then they list facts in the between. I compare it to an oreo cookie. I give each kid a cookie and the figure out the top and bottom are the same...
This is an effective tool to evaluate whether your students understand and can know any subject. By leaving the middle open-ended the assignment lasts as long as you need it too. I don't let my students turn in a poem until time is up. I say five minutes before time is up that they need to finish the sentence they are writing and write the closing "But the most important thing about ______ is...". It works!!!