After studying about various Indian tribes in Texas, I wanted my students to write a compare/contrast essay. Unfortunately, they were having difficulty finding what they wanted to say.
We stopped the lesson to draw (yeah, right).
I gave each student a large sheet of construction paper, which they then folded into thirds. In the middle, they drew a tepee, because most thought of tepees when they thought of housing.
After they colored the tepee, they wrote ONLY WORDS OF HOW THE INDIANS WE HAD STUDIED WERE ALIKE.
Next on the left of their paper,they drew the type of home a Karankawa Indian would build. After designing and coloring it, they wrote ONLY WORDS ABOUT THE KARANKAWA INDIANS!!!!
After that, they drew the type of home a Caddo Indian would have. After designing and coloring it, they wrote ONLY WORDS ABOUT THE CADDO INDIANS!!!
Now they were ready to begin the essay. We dis-cussed words to be used in the introductory paragraph. These words were listed at the top on the back of their paper, which had been divided by horizontal line. These would be words necessary for the introduction.
We wrote words at the bottom of this divided page for the conclusion.
When the student began their rough draft, they looked at words for introduction and went to work.
For the comparison paragraph, they only looked at the words on the tepee. The next paragraph was words from the Karankawa side (different); etc.
They had a really nice rough draft ready when we began our elaboration activities.