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What is your opinion on Opinion Writing?
Old 01-16-2016, 03:43 PM
 
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Just curious...what is your opinion on teaching first grade writers to write an opinion piece that includes a topic sentence stating their opinion of the topic, 3 reasons to support their opinion, transition words to separate their reasons, elaboration of their reasons that could include a mini-story or simile, and finally a concluding sentence. Developmentally appropriate?


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Too much
Old 01-16-2016, 05:49 PM
 
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I think writing opinions can work and even be fun for first graders but, the long list of requirements that you listed is too much. Even thinking of three reasons is hard. That level of writing sounds like late second or early third grade to me.
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We do opinion writing
Old 01-16-2016, 07:26 PM
 
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But we write an opinion, three reasons for the opinion and closure.
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Opinion
Old 01-16-2016, 10:05 PM
 
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We do opinion, 3 reasons, conclusion.

What you are describing is more like 2nd or 3rd grade.

Do first graders know what a simile is?
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Old 01-17-2016, 07:32 AM
 
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Sounds like you are using Lucy's Unit of Study. My district has adopted it as well. And it is way too much. I am rebelling and not using her very much this year. It's not structured enough and its expects the kids to do too much. Totally not appropriate. The standards are much more simple.


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I love it!
Old 01-17-2016, 08:17 AM
 
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This s most fun units to teach my first graders. They have an opinion about everything, and I love their reasoning. You can really do good work to raise the level of their thinking. I'm looking forward to starting this one soon!
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Old 01-17-2016, 10:57 AM
 
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I'm OK with everything but "elaboration of their reasons that could include a mini-story or simile." I think that's too much for the age. But they can probably handle three reasons with transition words if you brainstorm a little and put a "transition word bank" up for them to use.
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Old 01-17-2016, 06:02 PM
 
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I agree with Lakeside. That's exactly how I teach opinion writing.
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opinion
Old 01-17-2016, 06:20 PM
 
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I have taught Opinion Writing in K-2. In 1st, we do Lucy's unit on Writing Reviews and my kids do all of those things, except maybe the mini stories. They do it because they are so excited about these restaurants, movies, toys, etc, that ideas just pour out of them! In fact, I find opinion writing the genre in which most of my first graders exceed standards.

When I taught K, we did the Changing The World Unit and it's the cutest! The 2nd grade unit I think is a little tough. They basically write literary essays, so they definitely need a lot of opinion practice in K/1!
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Old 01-18-2016, 05:41 PM
 
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Thanks for all your support! My students have many resources available to them to help keep their writing organized (such as graphic organizers, anchor charts, and a transition word bank). And yes, I do teach them about similes. We also create a class anchor chart with our own similes! One of my students came up with "my throat feels like a cactus!" when describing how her throat hurt. LOVE IT! (Not that her throat hurt of course!). I agree opinion writing can be fun! Unfortunately, after much reflection, I believe the district mandated unit topic is what may be dragging my budding writers down...their opinion about which American symbol they would like to visit (such as the Statue of Liberty, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial etc).


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Opinion writing
Old 01-18-2016, 05:46 PM
 
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Like others have stated, I follow the common core standard - opening sentence, state an opinion, give a reason for the opinion (more if desired), closing sentence. I always use topics that are of high interest to my kids. "Do you think first graders should have an 8:00 bedtime?" "What's the best show on TV?" "Should we have homework on weekends?" "Which is best - art, music, or gym class?" They love writing their opinions and sharing with the class when we're finished.
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