Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Showing Not Telling With Writing

We have been working on improving our writing by trying to show with our words instead of just telling, sooooo...
I decided to try out this activity.  
I chose some common feelings and emotions and we talked about what someone 
did or said, or how a person would act if they were feeling that way.
We completed this brainstorm chart together.
(Sorry the pic is blurry.)
Then I gave each group a chart to complete themselves.
Each person had to use a different color pencil or marker so that I could see that everyone was participating.

Here's what they came up with.  (Sorry they are hard to read.)

Their challenge during reading workshop was then to find examples of showing, not telling while they were reading.  They kind of missed the boat on that one, so the next day I had some passages marked and read them aloud as examples.  (Those are the post-it notes on the posters.)
They are beginning to get more descriptive in their writing.

I found this FABULOUS book full of great examples of showing!
It is awesome I tell you!
It's out of print, but I was able to snag a used copy.
Check your library and beg, borrow (or steal :( ) a copy!


  1. Thank you for the book suggestion. I will put it on my list of books to find!

    Teaching Fourth

  2. I love how you had students use different colors. Love it!

  3. Thanks for all the great ideas on this! I know it is hard for my students to always understand showing and not telling. I will have to look for the book. I also really like having each student use a different marker on the chart paper.

    Apples and Papers

  4. I love how they are exploring feelings and assigning words to those feelings! You are teaching so much more here than just "showing"!

  5. I dunno how I am missing all these great posts but I have literally pinned like 10 things! You have got some incredible stuff going on. Thank you times a million for sharing!!



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