Free Writes

Recently I had a look at Scott Benedict’s successful-quickwrites-handout-1.

I thought it was brilliant, but a bit too advanced for my Year 3 students. So I tweaked it a bit, and with Scott’s blessing, would like to attach here a writing proforma and assessment rubric for you to use/tweak as you see fit. Please credit Scott as the original creator.

I made one page for writing, and explained to my students why it makes counting words so much easier to write on every little line, then simplified the rubric and photocopied the pages back to back so students can see where they are headed.

For my Indonesian students, I used four levels, Tidak ada (Not There Yet – if they wrote nothing), Berjalan (Walking – for those just beginning), Lari (Running – where most kids probably are) and Lari Cepat (Running Fast – for advanced students).

I think students can understand these levels easily. After writing, I had them assess themselves using the rubric on the reverse side of the sheet, and reflect on how they could improve.

I also spoke to Ibu Sharon from the SA TCI hub and expressed my concerns about students struggling with writing. She gave me a great suggestion, to let these students copy from the original story (best to give them a photocopy at their desk). I had not been doing this, but can see how it would give them more confidence. I will also permit them to use words they know before encouraging sentences. Maybe my expectations were too high. Thanks Sharon for your advice. Happy writing everyone! Hope these documents are useful to you. Let me know!

Quick Write Proforma

Quick Write Rubric writing rubric version 2

Still my favourite student story (see below)! chiom = cium


TPRS with Puppets!

If you are wanting more engagement with your younger students, try using puppets. I bought a girl, boy, mum and dad hand puppet at KMart for $12 each. I also purchased a pack of plastic dogs on eBay. There were 12 dogs in the packet. I can’t remember how much they were, but it was not expensive.

Last week I ‘puppeted’ two stories with my Prep – 2 classes. With the Preps, the story was Lucy Makan Anjing and with Years 1 and 2, the story was Lucy Mau Kucing.

I placed two triangular block seats together to make a quick and easy ‘stage’ for me to hide behind, then acted out the story with the puppets as I told it. Using puppets is a great opportunity for students to hear 1st person and 3rd person telling all in one. For example, I said ‘Lucy mau anjing’, then made the Lucy puppet say, ‘Saya mau anjing’.

The kids loved the ‘show’ so much they begged for more! I couldn’t believe my students were begging for more reps! This week with the Year 1 and 2s I will repeat the show, then choose students to act out the story in place of the puppets.

Prep Story (Translations below)

Makan Anjing (adapted from Eating Kittens by Diane Neubauer)

Ada perempuan. Nama perempuan Lucy. Lucy lapar.

Lucy makan satu anjing. Mmm bagus!

Lucy makan dua anjing. Mmm bagus!

(Repeat up to 10)

Lucy makan sepuluh anjing! Lucy nakal atau pandai?

(Kids shout ‘Lucy nakal!)

Year 1 – 2 Story

Lucy Mau Kucing ( from Kristy Kranz)

Lucy mau kucing. Lucy ke Ibu. Lucy berkata,”Ibu, saya mau punya kucing.”

Ibu berkata, “Tidak boleh, tidak boleh, tidak boleh!”

Lucy sedih. Lucy nangis. Lucy mau kucing.

Lucy ke bapak. Lucy berkata, “Bapak, saya mau punya kucing.”

Bapak baik hati. Bapak beri Lucy sepuluh dolar. 

Lucy ke Best Friends. Lucy beli kucing.

Lucy senang!

Kristy suggests repeating this story with various animals. It would be fun to use some Indonesian animals such as harimau and gajah.

I decided to write a parallel story for Lucy Mau Kucing with an Indonesian flavour:

Reza mau Orangutan

Go get some puppets and give these stories a try! Ikea also has fantastic puppets. My kucing puppet (see below) was purchased there. It is gorgeous!


Lucy eats Dogs

There is a girl. Her name is Lucy. Lucy is hungry. Lucy wants to eat dog(s). Lucy eats one dog, mmm yum! Lucy eats two dogs, mmm yum! Lucy eats three dogs and so on up to 10. Lucy eats ten dogs! Is Lucy good or is Lucy naughty? Lucy is naughty!

Lucy wants a Cat

There is a girl. Her name is Lucy. Lucy wants a cat. Lucy goes to mum. Lucy says, “Mum, I want to have a cat”. Mum says, “You may not, no, no, no”. Lucy is sad. Lucy cried. Lucy goes to Dad. Lucy says, “Dad, I want to have a cat “. Dad is kind. Dad gives Lucy 10 dollars. Lucy goes to Best Friends (pet store) and buys a cat. Lucy is happy!