Read Aloud! What kind of story do you think this is?
What is a personal narrative? A personal narrative tells about an event that happened to you.
Features of a Personal Narrative Characters Setting Problem(s) A series of events (beginning, middle and end) Plot Resolution
Personal Narrative Ideas A New PetBest Day or Worst Day A Time You Learned Something New A Birthday PartyFirst Day of SchoolA Vacation/ Place You Visited A Special MomentFamily MemoryMost Embarrassing Moment
Pick a Narrative Idea. Fill out this graphic organizer to help you write your personal narrative.
WatermelonSeed Just a list of things.Very specific and interesting. Too many ideas and events.Focused on one idea or event. Told about too many places.Showed what was happening. Not zoomed in enough!Zoomed in!
Which one is Watermelon or Seed? I went to California with my parents and my sister. The plane ride to California was boring First, we went to Palm Springs, where my grandparents live. On Friday we drove to Disneyland. That was great! We were staying at the Marriot Hotel in Los Angeles. That night we went out to dinner with my cousins who live there. When we got back to the hotel, my sister and I went up to our room on the elevator and my parents and cousins stayed downstairs in the lobby. My sister and I were sitting on our beds in our room watching two men bobsledding in the Olympics, and all of a sudden a really deep and loud honking noise went off. It was a fire alarm. We were scared till the porter told us it was a false alarm. My Trip to California The Scare at the Marriot
Narrative Goals Group A Developing your watermelon topic into a seed. Group B Analyze your narrative baseline. Review your writing and create a small moment (seed).
Types of Strong Leads Action (what is happening) Dialogue (talking) Description of the story’s setting (where and when the story took place) QuestionSound Effects
Using Actions Think about the first part of your story like a movie What happened? How can I put what happened into slow motion? Tell it bit by bit. Action Lead The surfer attempted to stand up on his board. Immediately, wave after monstrous wave crashed upon his head, thwarting his plans for a successful surf. This was the day I sat on the shore and watched a surfer.
Using Dialogue Think about the first part of your story like a movie that begins with talking What did people say? Try to remember as close to reality as it was. Dialogue Lead “This is pretty choppy,” my Dad said as we looked for surfers. “People are standing up but there’s also a lot dudes sitting in the water,” he continued. This was the day I sat on the shore and watched the surfers.
Using Setting Think about the first part of your story like a movie where you get a good view of the setting Describe where you were. Include details about the weather. Setting Lead The sun was shining. It was a Saturday morning on the white sandy beach. Palm trees were waving in the wind as white foaming tipped waves lapped at the shore. This was the day I sat on the shore and watched a surfer.
Using a Question Think about the first part of your story like a movie where you want the watcher to be confused and want to watch more Make the question personal. Use emotion in your question. Question Lead Why weren’t there any waves?, I groaned. I specifically came to this beach to practice my surfing and all I practiced was unhopeful anticipation. This was the day I sat on the shore and watched the ocean stand still.
Using Sound Effects Think about the first part of your story like a movie where you want the watcher to close their eyes and visual what’s happening Use sound effect words. When reading use inflection. Question Lead Splish, Splash. KaBOOM! These are the sounds I heard as I raced to the beach to catch a massive wave. The sound caught my attention so much, that I stopped running, closed my eyes and just listened. This was the day I sat on the shore and watched the surfers.
Strong Leads (Writer’s Notebook) Actions: Dialogue: Setting: Question: Sound Effects: Directions: Write a strong lead to your story using all five strategies below. After, decide which one you would like to use for your personal narrative.