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Elaborative Detail- Write it right!


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Keywords: English, Writing, Composition, Computers
Subject(s): Technology, Writing, Photography, English/Language Arts, Journalism
Grades 4 through 10
School: Abby Kelley Foster Reg Charter, Worcester, MA
Planned By: Becky Harvey
Original Author: Becky Harvey, Worcester
Students will be assigned the homework: search the internet for pictures of dogs or take a digital photo of their own dog. They will find save their favorite and print it out. Have each student email their choice to the teacher/class email. Save all photos to a main folder on the classroom computer prior to the class. Paste all photos into a word document with about 6 to 9 photos on each page.

As an opening assignment, tell the students to write a detailed, descriptive (using elaborative details) paragraph of their favorite dog picture.

There will be a large variety of pictures. Without fail, students' descriptions however, will be very similar.

One by one, have students volunteer to read their paragraphs. As they read, listen to the details and try to pick out their pictures. Display the choices on the smartboard. More often than not, the description they give will fit a number of photos because the children don't add enough details to make their work really stand out. This exercise really helps the students to see that adding specific details to their work will make it stand out and be special.
Follow-Up
Do the same thing, but with a picture of a tree. Hopefully the idea sinks in and it will be much easier for students to describe their picture successfully enough that everyone can find their photo among everyone else's.
Links: Link to Bing photo search of dogs
Link to Google photos search of dogs
Materials: Projectors, Writing, Word Processor, Hardware Devices