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Teacherbee_4 Teacherbee_4 is offline
 
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Postcard Exchange Advice
Old 12-15-2020, 04:41 PM
 
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I am involved in a postcard exchange. My kids are ready to start writing our post cards. I teach 4th grade. My plan was to put them in groups and have each group responsible for writing 1 letter to a class on our list. The classes on our lists are different grade levels, so I would tell them the grade level to help them write for their audience.

As the students begin to draft their letter, any ideas on how I could scaffold this for them? Ideas for how they should start, what they should include, how they should end, etc.? I'm just looking for tips to help the writing process go smoothly.

Thanks!


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Old 12-15-2020, 07:43 PM
 
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When I did a postcard exchange I had my students write about what foods we were known for and what attractions we had in our city of Philadelphia. We also wrote about our particular area of the city.
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Writing the postcard
Old 12-15-2020, 07:51 PM
 
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When I did this years ago, I had them first brainstorm and discuss a list things they thought were great about living in our area, or, being in Southern California, places they would take their out-of-town visitors to see.

What I found interesting is that, at fourth grade, they mostly took all of our 'attractive features' for granted. For example, the year-round good weather, our beaches, our mountains our many amusement parks/tourist attractions, etc. I found I had to 'lead' them toward realizing the benefits of all that surrounds us. Maybe you can lead them in a discussion about the features most important to them about where they live.

Whether on 'handmade' postcards or purchased postcards, if they wrote everything out they didn't really have much room to write more than 3 or 4 sentences. In other cases, teachers, or maybe students, typed up their 'entries' on sticker paper and were able to include more information. I did this project for several years. The first year, I had my students handwrite their entries, but then came the need to proofread, neatly correct the messages, all while trying to accurately convey what living in our area was about.

The next couple years my students went through the brainstorming process and discussions about living in our area. We collectively worked on a passage that I typed up and printed onto sticky paper (based on what other classes had sent) to fit onto the space allowed on the postcard. While it didn't provide the individualized writing experience I had originally imagined for this postcard project, using 'printed sticker paper messages' streamlined the process so that we were more efficient with the time we poured into this project.
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Thanks!
Old 12-16-2020, 05:14 PM
 
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Thanks for the advice. I ended up putting in groups and each group pis writing to 2 classes. We did an example together and then they worked on their drafting their own. I think next year I will go with the label/sticky paper. I think this year I will end up writing it on a postcard since I think 4th graders will have a hard time fitting it all on the post card, even with it only being 4-5 sentences.
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