Students learn opinion writing skills so that they can express their opinions in a clear and convincing way. Opinion writing also involves perspective-taking. Using children’s books to teach this important type of writing makes it more engaging and effective.
Opinion Writing Mentor Texts
The mentor texts for this opinion writing unit have strong themes. If you haven’t read Hey, Little Ant, you will be in for a big surprise. To step on an ant or not? This is a great book to showcase forming an opinion. Once they have experienced the Ant story, students will then debate what the perfect pet is. Do students agree with each other?
The Perfect Pet is a hilarious story about a girl who wanted a pet but her parents say, “No way!” She tries asking for all sorts of pets and they always have a reason why it would not make a good pet. Finally, the girl finds a bug. The bug named Doug becomes her friend. At first, her parents are disgusted, then they accept it and the bug becomes her forever friend.
Henry and Leo is a story about a stuffed toy that is like a friend to Henry but no one understands. Then it goes missing. What really happened? Although it comes back, students are left to wonder, imagine and come to their own conclusions. Perfect for the opinion writing experience.
The last story is about a gardener that creates topiary masterpieces that influences not only a child but a whole community to appreciate nature. The Night Gardner is the perfect segway to next month’s Earth day studies.
Types of Lessons
In this unit, students will be involved in group, partner, and individual writing lessons. Students will participate in a debate, run for Best Class pet, and many other engaging lessons that will have your students hooked on writing in no time. While each unit can be used as a stand-alone unit for whatever type of writing you are teaching, it also works nicely as a complete set that builds on.
Click here to see the full-year writing curriculum.
Take a look at the year-long overview you can view here to see if this unit is a good fit for your developing writers.