Thanks to the PTA, especially Rachel Schiffenbauer, the fourth-grade teachers, staff, and students for another fun and productive writing residency at Rock Creek Valley Elementary School. We focused on creating character. Each student chose an animal and, through a writing exercise, developed that character’s personality and motivation. We wrote monologues and also worked on how to bring emotion and drama into our reading/performance voices. The students worked to bring voice into their monologues by choosing interesting and specific words and phrases that would fit their characters’ personalities. Here is a sample from each of the three fourth grade classrooms.
What a great school! I loved seeing all students in third through fifth grades for an assembly and then getting the chance to do writing workshops with fourth graders. We focused on developing character and wrote monologues about an unusual day in the life of… whatever animal they wanted to be. I encouraged the writers to put clues in their work, but NOT to say outright what kind of animal they were. Every student wrote and got the chance to perform a portion of their stories. To model how students could take a piece of writing and create an audio story, we collaborated on recording one story from each class–complete with sound effects.
Great job, kids!
A huge thanks to the fourth grade team and to the PTA for coordinating this year’s creative writing residency at Rock Creek Valley Elementary School.Special thanks to parent Shauna Hill and to teacher Rebecca McNiece for all the communication and coordination. Listen to the three stories below. (If you can’t see them, your computer is blocking. Try https://soundcloud.com/mary-amato-author/sets/rock-creek-valley-2018.
Can you guess the animal who love waffles in this story?
Can you guess the animal who is learning to fly and hunt?
Can you guess the animal who is trying to impress the King of the Jungle?
Thanks to the PTA, staff, and students of Rock Creek Valley for bringing me in for a residency in fiction writing. Every student wrote and revised a story. We focused on details, dialogue, and drama. Listen to Josie’s story to hear one great example of the work. The recording was a group effort using an the voice recorder on a smart phone.