A 60 minute lesson in which students will use a fact file and scaffolding sheet to write an informative text in pairs.
Explain to the students that they are going to apply their knowledge of informative text structure, language features and paragraph structure to write an informative text in pairs.
Project one of the fact files from the Informative Writing Tasks – Fact Files and Scaffolding Sheet on the board and read through the facts as a class. Point out to the students that the facts in the fact file are key phrases only, rather than full sentences. Ask the students to explain why it is not necessary (or appropriate) to write full sentences when recording research.
Place the students into writing pairs. Provide each pair with a fact file and scaffolding sheet. Select a fact file that best suits the chosen content focus of the unit e.g. the phenomenon of weather. Alternatively, allow the students to choose the topic that interests them most.
Working in their writing pairs, allow the students to read and sort the facts in the fact file, then use these facts to write an informative text. Encourage the students to use the categories in the sorting table as subheadings within their informative text. Monitor and support the students as required.
Teachers may wish to set a time limit for writing, or they may allow the students to take as much time as they need to complete the task. Ensure that the students know exactly how much time they have and provide regular reminders of how much time is remaining.
Check on how the students are progressing with their informative texts. Depending on the time limit set for writing, the students may need another lesson to complete their texts.
Allow more confident writers to work individually, rather than in pairs (if they wish to do so).
Allow students who find writing challenging to work with a teacher or teacher aide during the pair activity.
Suggested Assessment Strategies
used strategic whole class or individual questioning
observed student participation during learning activities