Building a Description Using Facts

Teach Starter Publishing
60 mins | Suitable for stages: 2 - 4

A 60 minute lesson in which students will build a description of an animal, person or object using facts.

Tuning In

  • Revise the content of the unit so far. Ask the students:
    • What is a fact?
    • What is an opinion?
    • Which of these would you find in an informative text?

Teacher Instruction

  • Provide each student with a descriptive phrase card from the Informative Writing - Fact Sorting Activity (depending on class size, some students may have more than one card). Attach the three topic posters (sharks, doctors and smartphones) to the board.
  • Allow the students to take turns to read out their descriptive phrase to the rest of the class. The class must match each phrase to the topic being described e.g. a type of fish would belong to the topic of sharks. Build a fact file for the three topics by attaching each descriptive phrase card to the board around the corresponding topic poster.
  • Choose one of the three topics. Project the appropriate scaffold planning sheet (either animals, objects or people) from the Informative Texts - Scaffold Planning Sheets on the board. As a class, sort the descriptive phrases into the correct subheadings on the planning sheet. Explain to the students that these categories will become paragraphs when it is time to write a complete informative text.

Guided/Independent Learning

  • Allow the students to choose one of the two remaining topics that was not covered in the previous activity. Provide the students with the appropriate scaffold planning sheet for the topic they have chosen (either animals, objects or people). Allow the students to work in small groups, in pairs or individually to sort the descriptive phrases for their chosen topic into the correct subheadings on the planning sheet. Encourage the students to add any additional facts if they can.

Wrapping Up

  • Allow the students to share with the class how they sorted the descriptive phrases for the two remaining topics.


Extending Students

  • Encourage fast finishers to research additional facts about their chosen topic.

Supporting Students

  • Allow students with lower literacy levels to work on the sorting activity in a small group with a teacher or teacher aide.

Suggested Assessment Strategies

  • used strategic whole class or individual questioning
  • observed student participation during learning activities
  • recorded student progress on a checklist
  • annotated student work samples
  • collected and reviewed student work samples
  • facilitated whole class or peer feedback sessions
  • encouraged student self-reflection
  • administered formal assessment tasks.

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