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Activities,  September 26, 2006

Writing Stories - A YouthLearn Activity Using Patterns to Master More Complex Structures

What is a story? Nothing more than an orderly telling of a tale in a way that the audience understands and appreciates enough to want to see how it ends.

We're used to thinking about stories in terms of fables, novels or movies, but when children write a report about an inquiry-based project, they're really telling a story about their discoveries. A poem is a story, even if it's just a story about an emotion felt for only a minute. It's cliché, but it's true: Every picture tells a story. When you have kids create multimedia presentations, animation, a video or a Web page, they need storytelling skills to keep the viewer engaged and interested.

Pattern Writing for Stories

Pattern writing activities don't have to be limited to simple forms or to practicing basic skills. You can build on them to begin teaching more complex models that form the basis for learning storytelling and how to organize ideas. Particularly with older kids (but certainly not exclusively), you'll want to try broader, more sophisticated patterns from books, songs and poetry. Two activities you can use are Patterns in Poetry and Pattern Writing From Books and Poems.

Organizing Stories

The heart of writing a story is identifying the main ideas behind it and the order in which they'll be presented. If kids can learn to do that, they are more then halfway to becoming good writers and communicators. You can use many tools to organize stories, including several graphic organizers that we've discussed before...

URL: http://www.youthlearn.org/learning/activities/language/stories.asp
Posted by wrivenburgh on September 26, 2006 | Activities
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