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    Meaningful Sentences
    By Kelly

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    Although I really don't enjoy doing it or grading it, once a week in my class we work on a meaningful sentence with a chosen word. For example: on Monday we choose an unfamiliar word from one of our stories or subject areas and find the defintion and two synonyms. on Tuesday we write a "skeleton" sentence, using the word correctly but with no detail. on Wednesday we go back and add at least three sensory details. On Thursday we work with our partner to answer any questions our sentence might leave and add those details or take out previously added details that do not make sense. On Friday we edit and write a final draft of a meaningful sentence that creates a mind movie. Each phase takes only about 5 minutes a day, but it models for the entire class each week what a good descriptive sentence sounds like and also allows each child to write a quality sentence once a week. When we write paragraphs (which is about as far as we go) we decide as a class, how many "meaningful sentences" it takes to make up the paragraph. Later I make overheads of their paragraphs and we discuss if the paragraph is composed of meaningful sentences that all blend together to expand on one big idea. THis works pretty well in my class (without spending a lot of time on it, because kids find writing boring) hope it helps.

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