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English Language Arts The 6+1 Trait Writing Model

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Presentation on theme: "English Language Arts The 6+1 Trait Writing Model"— Presentation transcript:

1 English Language Arts The 6+1 Trait Writing Model

2 The 6+1 Trait Writing Model
Ideas Organization Voice Word Choice Sentence Fluency Conventions Presentation from 6+1 Traits of Writing by Ruth Culham

3 Trait #1: Ideas Simply stated, ideas make up the content of the writing piece. Strong ideas = Clear overall message/content Students struggle with ideas because writing is complex, they think faster than they can write, and they often don’t write for themselves.

4 Trait #1: Ideas As teachers, we must help our students…
Select an idea (the topic) Narrow the idea (focus) Elaborate on the idea (development) Discover the best information to convey the main idea (details)

5 Trait #1: Ideas Some ways to teach the Ideas trait:
Free writing Flashbacks Favorite places “Picture This” “String Along”

6 Trait #2: Organization Organization is the internal structure of the piece, the thread of central meaning, the pattern of logic. Students struggle with organization because rigid organization is often overvalued, organization is a difficult thing to achieve, and there is no single program to solve all of our organizational woes.

7 Trait #2: Organization As teachers, we must help our students with…
Writing an introduction—a lead that hooks the reader. Developing the middle of the paper—a core that is logically organized and contains clearly linked details. Writing the conclusion—an ending that leaves the reader satisfied.

8 Trait #2 Organization Some ways to teach the Organization trait:
Share examples from literature Teach organizational options: Organize by space Organize by time Organize by content Organize by perspective

9 Trait #3: Voice Voice is the writer’s music coming out through words, the sense that a real person is speaking to you and cares about the message. Students struggle with voice because it’s not as concrete as other traits, because there is a perception that “boring” is good, because it’s a bit too personal, and because many teachers still say that some forms of writing don’t require voice.

10 Trait #3: Voice As teachers, we must remember that voice emerges when the writer…
Speaks directly to the reader on an emotional level. Experiments with style to match the purpose and audience. Takes risks by revealing the person behind the words.

11 Trait #3: Voice Some ways to teach the Voice trait:
Share different artists’ recordings of the same song Illustrate the voice trait Compare and contrast (same story, different authors) New Voices, New Choices (5 letters)

12 Trait #4: Word Choice Word choice isn’t just about the use—or misuse—of words. It is about the use of rich, colorful, precise language that both communicates and inspires the reader. Students struggle with word choice because too often, language is used to exclude, vocabulary is often taught in isolation, and students tend to get “word drunk.”

13 Trait #4: Word Choice As teachers, we must teach our students how to use…
Striking language: Sharpen students descriptive powers Exact language: Using lively verbs, precise nouns, and accurate modifiers Natural language: Making it sound authentic Beautiful language: Choosing colorful words and phrases

14 Trait #4: Word Choice Some ways to teach the Choice trait:
Painting a picture with words Top Ten List of words Finding key words and phrases in captivating texts

15 Trait # 5: Sentence Fluency
Strong sentence fluency is marked by logic, creative phrasing, parallel construction, alliteration, and word order that makes reading feel natural. Students struggle with sentence fluency because of the overemphasis on correctness, because writing classrooms are too quiet, and because writing good sentences is harder than it looks.

16 Trait #5: Sentence Fluency As teachers, we must help our students with. . .
Establishing flow, rhythm, and cadence. Varying sentence length and structure. Constructing sentences that enhance meaning.

17 Trait #5: Sentence Fluency Some ways to teach the Sentence Fluency trait:
Reading aloud to yourself Sentence stretching End with a noun “A rolling stone gathers no moss.” Picture your sentence “This sentence is short.”

18 Trait #6: Conventions Conventions guide the reader through the text, making ideas readable and understandable. Conventions = spelling, punctuation, grammar, capitalization, paragraphing, etc. Students struggle with conventions because they don’t see the power of good writing mechanics, and because they aren’t encouraged to take enough risks with their writing.

19 Trait #6: Conventions As teachers we should…
Be sure students understand that editing and revising are different. Expect correctness, but only according to appropriate developmental level and age. Value experimentation right along with correctness. It’s a balancing act. Be patient. Learning to use conventions well takes time.

20 Trait #6: Conventions Some ways to teach the Conventions trait:
Take it out Error Hunt Conventions Experts Reading Backwards Practice Makes Perfect

21 Presentation (+1) How the writing looks to the reader.
Writing should have a finished look that shows care.

22 Presentation (+1) As teachers, we need to encourage the following in our students’ writing:
Uniform spacing Legible handwriting; appropriate use of fonts and sizes Appealing use of white space

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