Teachers share their best reading and writing units that boost essential literacy skills for each grade level.
Think about all the ways reviews are used in our marketable and advertised world: books, restaurants, movies, video games, technological gadgets, and even running shoes have an audience eager to learn and read more. This type of writing is all around us and is used frequently. In this unit, students will investigate three areas of review writing: food, movies, and books. Having your students study and evaluate the genre of written reviews at the beginning of the year is a good idea because:
- Review writing is not intimidating to your reluctant writers due to its short length and conversational style.
- It requires a blended approach to reading and writing. In turn, students learn to read like a writer and see the relationship between the two.
- Students learn how to create a strong introduction, defend a judgment through supporting details, as well as learn the importance of being descriptive.
- Reviews serve a real purpose, allowing your students to start the year off with writing for an audience.
- It allows students to write about a variety of things that interests them, while using resources that meet individual's needs.
With a blended approach to reading and writing, particular attention will be given to formative assessment and how that helps guides the instruction of teaching, learning, and producing written works of review.
- Evaluate and thoughtfully respond to literature and products through the craft of study
- Read, review, and reflect on a variety of written works by professionals and peers
- Understand the importance of written reviews in our literate lives
- Recommend and persuade peers to read and try out different products and book selections
- Use self-reflection and formative assessment to improve their quality of writing
- Participate with an online book review community
- Use technology tools to collaborate, publish, and interact with peers, experts, and other audiences
- Use a variety of media and formats to communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences
- Use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect information from a variety of sources
- Learn to think critically about objectively about one's own reading and writing
Take the completed reviews and place them in a class magazine. Have students work together to create a fun cover for the magazine (see the We Recommend... Example Class Magazine Cover).
- Students read a wide range of print to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the world.
- Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.
- Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions (e.g., spelling and punctuation), media techniques, figurative language, and genre to create, critique, and discuss print.
- Students conduct research on issues and interests by generating ideas and questions, and by posing problems. They gather, evaluate, and synthesize data from a variety of sources (e.g., print, artifacts, people) to communicate their discoveries in ways that suit their purpose and audience.
Students will explore writing movie reviews as part of a larger unit of study on review writing.
In this five-step online workshop, a well-known children's author helps students learn to analyze and write about books.
3–5, 6–8, 9–12
3–5, 6–8, 9–12