Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Session 10 (Research)

Lifting the Level of Sentence Complexity


Instead of drafting and revising new chapters, as you have been doing for a few days now, you will be rereading to edit for sentence complexity.  

In 2 days, you will go from not having a book to having one.  It will take a lot of intense work so I will keep this mini lesson  brief.

Today you will edit and recopy your chapters-doing that onto loose leaf, one sided.  You will cut the draft apart to format it tomorrow and put it into books.  

To edit, your writing needs the 3Cs.  You already worked toward the two Cs-making your writing clear and correct.  Today you will use the Information Writing Checklist to help you edit.  
**Give students copies**

Today I want to teach you that beyond clear & correct, it is also powerful to know how to make your sentences more complex. One ways to lift the level of your sentence complexity is to rewrite patches of your writing so that your sentences resemble mentor sentences.

This writer, Emily Richmond, uses different kinds of punctuation to make her sentences more complex.  After seeing how she does this, I want us to push ourselves to write a sentence in a similar way.

There is a variety of punctuation in this sentence.  I notice a comma and a dash.  But I don't want to just count the punctuation.  I want to notice how the punctuation works in the sentence.  

Let's looks at the dash...I notice that before the dash, the author seems to be stating an idea she predicted.  Then after the dash, the writer seems to show how her idea changed in a positive way.  The dash helps show that unexpected idea, while also giving new information.  First she says she expected a good turnout and then she writes about the bigger response she actually received.  

Example: Blue sentence is a draft sentence
Green sentence is how they made the sentence more complex!

Active Engagement:
* If you want another example use the one on page 92

Take a piece of your own information writing and make it look like the examples we just studied.  

You now have a list of strategies to apply when using punctuation to make sentences more complex.  

Go and continue editing and revising your work. 

Mid-Workshop Teaching: Pronoun Agreement
Pronouns are words that take the place of someone or something's name, or a group of people or things, words like I, me, you, us, our and he, she it, they.

Here is the issue: some of your pronouns are not agreeing.  That means you are accidentally matching singular pronouns like he/she/it to plural pronouns like they/their/ours. Here is a quick example of the mistake:

If you donate money to the cause of girls' education, most people will feel that they did something worthwhile.

See how I used both you and they in the same sentence? here is a quick way to revise a sentence like that:

If you donate money to the cause of girls' education, you will feel like you did something worthwhile.  

Edit with Partners Using a checklist
**Pass out to students

Tomorrow you will be spending time putting your books together, imagine how they will look and what text features you will choose to teach readers more about your topic.  You will need to take your information chapters home with you, continue fixing up your drafts, and then make a final copy.  Remember that your goal is to have 4-6 chapters done for your book.  

To fix up your drafts, read them with your editing checklist in hand and fix up anything that needs fixing up.  One specific lens you could use is spelling.  You might take a moment to take advantage of every resource you have: knowledge of spelling patterns, dictionaries, the Internet, family experts,, and so forth, to make sure all of your words are spelled correctly.

Use everything you know about making your writing clear, correct & complicated  to bring a clean copy for tomorrow.  We are going to plan our book with text features! 

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