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Mme Escargot Mme Escargot is offline
 
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4th Grade Language Arts Question
Old 07-26-2020, 05:29 PM
 
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4th grade teachers: What kind of writing do you do in 4th grade? Do you do comparison / contrast essays yet? Persuasive? How-to? Informative? What else?

What are reasonable expectations for number of paragraphs or approximate word count?

Since our schools are all starting virtually - indefinitely- I decided to post on local social media that I could offer language arts tutoring. I was planning to just facilitate and support whatever they were learning with their own teacher. But I’ve had a mom contact me wanting me instead to supplement for her rising 4th grader what she feels is a very lacking writing curriculum at her kid’s school. I think I could do that but don’t know what 4th graders should be able to do.

Can you recommend any favorite resources? Thank you in advance!


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Old 07-26-2020, 07:30 PM
 
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Empowering Writers and Simplify Writing are two great curriculums Iíve used. Both are very structured and laid out for you.

I taught all the kinds of writing you listed. I teach the three basic types, and then the various subtypes:
Narrative:
-personal narrative
-creative narrative (imaginative story)
-nonfiction narrative (biography for example)

Informational:
-descriptive
-how-to
-explanatory
-compare contrast
-sequential
-text based

Opinion:
-persuasive/argument
-literary response

There is a lot of overlap between informational and Opinion.

I taught 3-5 paragraphs as a basic guideline, depending on text type.

Check out the standards as a guide for where to start.

I start by teaching how to differentiate between all three types, like reading three pieces all on the same topic (dogs) and then looking at the difference (narrative: when my dog got lost; informational: all about dogs; opinion: why I should get a dog for a pet)

Then teach the structure for one type and focus on the elements of that type. Look at lots of sample pieces of that type, identify those elements. Then I take them through the writing process, modeling each step as they work on a prompt for that type.
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Thank you
Old 07-27-2020, 09:54 AM
 
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Thank you, KatieViolet. That gives me a good sense of what to work on and reasonable expectations. I appreciate your taking the time to write it out in detail.
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