Grade: Elementary

#3899. Writing about Penguins

Reading/Writing, level: Elementary
Posted Thu Feb 8 16:22:36 PST 2007 by Toshia Leisten (
East End Elementary , Easley, SC USA
Materials Required: internet, writing paper
Activity Time: over the coarse of a week
Concepts Taught: Working with writing maps, using the internet, and studying penguins

Daily Lesson Plan

Lesson # :
1-4 Date:
January 16- January 19, 2007 Class/Block:
Writing Topic/Source:
Penguins Thematic Unit

Student Objectives: After reviewing the website, students will be able to write an informative paper about penguins.

SC Standards/PACT
1-W1 ( all components of this standard)

*We will also discuss habitats, basic needs of the penguin, and penguin predators and prey.

Resources and Materials
Happy Feet (children's book based on the current movie, however it contains facts about penguins)
Internet website:
Tacky the Penguin- children's book
Other books about penguins found in our school library
After reading Happy Feet and visiting the website, the students will then generate a circle map to include five facts about penguins. From the circle map, the students will then complete a tree map, followed by writing complete sentences. The rough draft will be edited with the teacher's help and then the final copy will be placed on a penguin writing paper.

Activities related to this unit will include, but not limited to, reading children's books focused on penguins and "touring" the website. The website includes fun facts, pictures, and games.

A daily review of the class circle map will be done prior to the writing lesson. The children's penguin books and other penguin books will be placed at the front of the class and will be available for the students to read during free time. I have three students that will complete the assignment one-on-one with me each day. This time will include a review and a step by step writing guide. Their assignment will also be decreased to three sentences.

Lesson Outline / Notes:
Day 1--Tuesday January 16, 2007: The teacher will begin introducing the penguins by reading Happy Feet. After we have read this book, we will then visit a website that is kid friendly and provides fun facts, pictures, and games about penguins. At the conclusion of Day 1 lesson, each student will generate a circle map to include five penguin facts. The teacher will check for completion and accurate facts.

Day 2--Wednesday January 17, 2007: We will open the lesson by generating a "class" circle map. The children will tell me the facts they recall from Day 1 lesson. From our class circle map we will create a tree map (to include 5 branches- each branch written in a different color). After a review of how to write and create a tree map, the students will write their own tree maps using their individual circle maps. The teacher will check for completion and accuracy.

Day 3--Thursday January 18, 2007: We will begin the lesson by reviewing the class circle map and tree map. From that we will begin to write our sentences. The teacher will write each sentence in the coordinating color on the tree map. This will help show how the tree map becomes sentences. Then, the students will generate their own sentences using their tree maps. The teacher will edit these drafts with them to ensure capitalization, punctuation, and spelling.

Day 4- Friday January 19, 2007: Students will take their rough drafts (edited from the day before) and make a nice copy on special penguin writing paper. These will be displayed in the hall with our wall that is titled "Chillin' In First Grade". We have an igloo on the wall and our writings will be displayed around it.

Assessment: Using the Write from the Beginning writing rubrics, each student will earn a grade based on their individual writing.

________3 or more logically sequenced and focused sentences (5pts.)
________Standard and inventive spelling (2pts.)
________Capitalization (2pts)
________Punctuation (2pts)
________Spacing (2 pts.)
________Descriptive language (3 pts.)
________Varied sentences (1 pt)
________Compound sentences (2 pts)
________Extended sentences (1 pt.)