The English Classroom

A GUIDE TO IMPROVING STUDENT LITERACY

The Situation

You want to encourage your students to use specific verbs and adverbs in their writing.

You want your students to create a bank of word to use in their writing.


The Solution

Wen writing, there are many plates that students need to balance. As a teacher, you are also trying to bring together many threads and remind them to maintain good habits with their writing: using correct punctuation, experimenting with vocabulary, being descriptive and using a range of language features.

This activity assumes that students are already independent in their writing, though need to be reminded to practise using adverbs in their writing. This activity will also allow students to develop a word bank that they can use for their writing. Word banks are incredibly helpful for students, especially if they can write their own.

  1. Ask students to write a list of the following:
    • 5x verbs
    • 5x adverbs
  2. Remind students of the definition for each and provide example: running (verb) and quickly (adverb)
  3. Ask students to record their words on their page and trade some with their partner.
  4. Record students ideas on the white.
  5. Ask students now formulate a sentence that uses both words. For example, Jessica ran quickly across the football pitch.
  6. Now encourage student to add a subordinate clause to their writing. Remember a subordinate clause adds further information to a sentence and does not make sense on its own. For example: Like an explosion, Jessica ran quickly across the football pitch.
  7. Provide students with time to write their own example and share with their shoulder partner.

Now students have combined a number of writing skills. For instance:

  • Using adverbs and verbs
  • Using subordinate clauses to create a complex sentence.

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