P.6 English – Bringing Writing to Life – Show, don’t just tell (A planned lesson for tmw!!)

18 Apr

Okay. It’s just one class observation by my principal. It’s not the first nor the last, but why do I feel the tension in my stomach? Every time when I am nervous, I lose my appetite. I didn’t have my dinner until ten tonight. I slept for a few hours before dinner time as I ‘ve got a headache. How stupid I am! I therefore came here to write. Writing calms me down. I’ll realize how absurd I am when I read my own stuff.

This is the lesson (one hour) I planned for tmw.

Motivation:

1. I’ll remind the kids about the idea of doing something together with their Singapore Buddies.

2. Revising the idea we have in ART (https://missjanetlaw.wordpress.com/2010/04/12/art-project/ ), my plan is to ask the singapore students to send us their photos and we in turn send them ours. With a letter of each of the student, we will tell them more about ourselves, the places we want to visit in Singapore (HK for them) or things we want to do in Singapore (HK for them). Then we’ll take their pics to those places (vise versa) and take pics again. At last, we will write an adventure story with at least four pictures we took.

3. So we have the motives to learn how to write better.

Part 1

1. I will show my kids some sentences they wrote all the time.

e.g. I like to read this book because it is interesting and funny.

        I like her because she is interesting and funny.

        I don’t like the English lesson because it is not interesting and funny.

2. I want to show them how “interesting and funny” these sentences can be and lead to the question – “What makes your story boring”?

3. Then i’ll come to the conclusion that it’s because they tell all the time without much showing.

4. Next, I’ll introduce what is “Telling” and “Showing” with two examples I wrote. I used these examples because the character “Angel” is my student. She always scratches her head when she feels nervous. My kids will love this hilarious story.

5. I’ll ask my kids to compare the two and want them to think of the techniques of changing telling to showing. (A pairwork disscussion, maybe around five minutes) I used three different colours to give them hints. Three techniques are used. RED – Using Action Verbs, ORANGE – Adding Dialogues, GREEN – Using gestures and movements

6. I may ask some pairs of students to come out and tell the class their findings.

7. At last, show them the techniques and examples. May discuss further about having other techniques, e.g the one they learnt in writing poems – using metaphors, similes.

Part 2

1. Show them two more paragraphs and ask them to identify which one is  showing / telling and which techniques have been used in the examples. (Brittany in the example is also my kid)

2. Pairwork again. Write a short paragragh about Georgina, one of the kids in the class, using the techniques they have just learnt. Pick some pairs to come out and share their work. Other students need to identify the techniques they used and give comments.

3. After the sharing, IF ….IF only I have more time…Actually I want them to think about the proportion of showing and telling in a story. Which part of the story can use telling/ showing and why? I want to use the compo they have written last year (about shoplifting) as an example.

4. Homework

Hope that I’m not too ambitous to do everything in one lesson and my kids will enjoy this lesson.

I can finally hit the sack now. Thank you and keep your fingers crossed for me!

Reference:

http://www.writing-world.com/basics/dawn02.shtml

http://www.dailywritingtips.com/show-dont-tell/

http://jerz.setonhill.edu/writing/creative/showing.htm

http://users.wirefire.com/tritt/tip1.html

http://www.articlesbase.com/fiction-articles/show-dont-tell-what-does-this-writing-rule-mean-406894.html

http://hubpages.com/hub/Writing-Technique-Show–Dont-Tell-to-Engage-Your-Reader

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