Finding their Voices #SOL19

During a grade level meeting today, the teachers were asked which of the writing standards each would like to unpack.   As my colleagues and I divided the information, narrative, and persuasive writing standards, I really thought about which of the three I like to teach the most.

I enjoy teaching all types of writing, but I think I enjoy teaching persuasive writing the most.  It is more important than ever for my learners to learn to use their voices in an educated and respectful manner.  I enjoy watching their confidence soar as they use their writing skills to voice their opinions and make change.  Here are just a few examples of ways my learners have reached out to make this world a better place:

  • A fifth grader noticed that the chains on the swings were greatly rusted and they needed adjustments made to the heights of the swings.  He wrote a letter to the principal and head of maintenance.  All of the chains were replaced and heights adjusted within the week.
  • Another fifth grader loved to collect a popular doll and noticed that the doll was growing more expensive while its quality was not as good as it once was.  She wrote a letter to the company.  Within three weeks, she received a letter in return.  They thanked her for sharing her concerns and told her about things they were doing to try to return the doll to its previous quality.
  • A learner wanted to start a soccer club in the community.  All of our students currently travel to neighboring communities for soccer.  He wrote to our athletic director.  The director came to the elementary school to have a sit-down meeting with the student and listen to his concerns.  While there still isn’t a local soccer club, the young man felt as if his opinions were valued and respected.

I love the excitement, engagement, and empowerment that my learners feel when they write persuasively.  They are the future, and it’s time they develop their voices. I’m thrilled to be a part of it.

6 thoughts on “Finding their Voices #SOL19

  1. I love the progression of opinion writing from reviews to book reviews to research based argument essays and literary essays. It gets richer and richer and connects to multiple layers in the world around them.

    • I completely agree, Heather. My fourth graders are starting a literary essay unit, and I am thrilled with our discussions and their insights, so far.

  2. You really made me think about which type I enjoy to teach the most and I’m still not sure about my preference! I loved the statement “I enjoy watching their confidence soar as they use their writing skills to voice their opinions and make change.”

    • Thank you, Jen. I especially find this to be true with the high ability learners who have so much to say but aren’t sure how to effectively say it.

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