We were invited to serve as an audience for Ali Schwartz' 1st and 2nd graders who had completed a writing unit of study. The children had written fiction stories with an emphasis on how an author gets their point across with an emphasis on word choice. Wow! My children were super listeners and as each 1st or 2nd grader finished reading their story they were then peppered with several questions and comments about their work! I was thrilled that all their questions pertained to the piece and many were very specific to a particular part of the story that they wanted more information. Yeah!!!
We are currently working on how-to books. Everyone began by choosing their favorite sandwich, making their sandwich out of playdough, and then explaining to a group just how they created their sandwich. The children began writing the steps involved in making their sandwich. When all the steps were finished (using the transition words first, next, then and finally) they wrote an introduction and final words. When all that was complete they created a table of contents labeled; Things You Need and finished off with a cover page. Whew! As they begin their second how-to books (a topic of their own choosing) they are easily maneuvering through all the pages and a couple of prolific writers are on their 3rd how-to books.
It's such a thrill to watch them grow as writers!