Welcome to our Authors and Artists blog! This is a web site for my "Budding Authors and Artists" (grades 1-3) and "Awesome Authors and Artists" (grades 3-6) to have a chance to showcase their work. Please feel free to leave any comments for these outstanding authors or their teacher!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Powerful Paragraph Writing!

The "Awesome Authors and Artists" class was given a challenge to write a descriptive paragraph based on a nature picture brought in from home.  They were given a list of possible sentence patterns.  Some of these included:
~Include two vivid adjectives.
~Use a phrase or clause that tells "when" or "where."
~Start a sentence with "Because."
~Use a strong adverb in the sentence.
~ Use a quote style sentence.
~ Use a very strong, vivid verb (no "is," "go," etc.)
~ A sentence that has unique punctuation

And more!

In addition, they were given three options for the topic of their paragraphs:
~ Describe your picture.
~ Tell a short story (only one paragraph!) about your picture.
~ A nature lesson on the subject of your picture (this was by far the hardest one.)

Here are some of my favorite samples across the grades.  Enjoy these beautiful pictures and paragraphs!  (See if you can find the technique in each sentence that makes it different from the other sentences!)

Picture Descriptions:
by Kayla (3rd grade)
     This graceful, shiny dolphin is jumping out of the air.  Because of its incredible strength, it can easily fly out of the water.  As it leaps, the sun is beautifully setting.  The sky is blue and orange with puffy clouds.  Obviously, dolphins are interesting creatures.

     by Izzy (4th grade)
     This is a family of three cute penguins in the snowy cold weather.  Because the baby penguin can hardly walk, he is using his daddy's feet and body for support.  When the dad walks, the baby penguin walks, too!  "We are so grateful to have you, aren't we?" the mother asked.  "Yes, we are," replied the father.  "And I'm so lucky to have you as parents," added the toddler.

 by Adam (5th grade)
     Because the cheetah was going faster than anyone has seen before, its prey couldn't seem to get away.  The unlucky gazelle was taken to the magnificent tree, where the two cheetahs got ride of every part and piece of the gazelle.  After the poor animal was devoured, the cheetah started to look for another prey.  He soon spotted a frightened gazelle, and sprinted, making sure he would catch it.  I was lucky enough to catch a perfect photo, which reminds me of the precious moment.

by Niki (5th grade)
     On a sunny morning, a big brown bear soared into the air with a salmon in its paws.  The fish flapped its flippers in the bear's face, keeping it from being devoured.  "Just keep flopping!  Just keep flopping!" screamed the fish desperately.  The bear closed its eyes and dug its paws into the salmon, finishing it off.  Righteously, the bear sunk its teeth into the silver and pink flesh.  What a delicious meal!

Story Time!

by Nicole (4th grade)
     One day, I took a walk through a large forest.  Then, I spotted a small, red-eyed frog sitting on a leaf.  As I went down to get a closer look, I felt like I'd seen this sort of frog before, I just couldn't remember it.  So I leaned over to pick it up, but to my surprise, it leaped onto my hand!  Suddenly, I remembered its name: It was a Red-Eyed Tree Frog and..... it's poisonous!  I shook my hand to try and drop it, but unfortunately I figured out what it was a little too late.......

by Bette (5th grade)
     I walked through the woods on a cold winter day.  Snowflakes pattered down on my warm winter coat.  I looked up at the sky, but frosted trees blocked my view.  "This forest is deserted," I thought.  I looked around once more, when I spotted a bird.  "Here, all alone, like me!" I thought.  I walked up to the bird.  Who knew that nature could be your best friend?

by Mira (6th grade)
     From a high perch in some foliage, the scene pans to a small trio of drenched, maroon bears wandering a pebbly beach.  Warily, two brothers protect the lookout, and a smallish sister, who gazes out into the distance, surveys the murky and eco-rich waves.  They slowly wade in shallow water, as if yearning to reunite and find a family member of tasty meal in time to frolic together a little longer.  Growling and murmuring drifts between the cubs, which are discussing a way to brave the turbulence!  Like anticipatory spies, the triplets eagerly race to the other shore, clawing and pushing the water with lengthy claws; a technique that causes them to bob and advance rapidly through the choppy resistance.  As I always say, "Determination along with teamwork creates a success."  These persistent, young brown bears exemplify a symbol of childhood and bonding like no other animals.

Scientific Facts:
by Lucy (5th grade)
     The Kakapo is a cute and friendly animal, which was once at the brink of extinction.  It is the world's heaviest parrot at about twenty inches, and four to nine pounds.  It gets its name from Kaka, which means owl-like.  The Kakapo feathers are green on its back with yellow at the end of each feather.  Moreover, they have long nails that are great for climbing, since this bird can't fly.  This ia g great and beautiful creature that was thankfully saved from extinction by the Kakapo Recovery Team.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

New Year's Resolutions

My New Year's Resolution is to not get so behind on this blog!!
     The Budding Authors and Artists read a poem about New Years, and we followed it with a writing assignment about New Years Resolutions.  The goals the children set for themselves were fabulous, but listing the goals were not enough.  They had to write about WHY those resolutions were important to follow through on, and what would happen if they succeeded.  Enjoy these samples!

     My New Year's Resolutions are to not watch that much TV, and follow directions.  This is important because I want to follow directions, and my mom won't be happy if I don't.  Ii don't want to watch TV that much, because it's bad for my brain!  If I do these things, I will get more time to spend with my family, and I will be a good student!
~Kalea, 1st grade

     My New Year's Resolution is to be better at math than I am now.  I think I need to work on subtraction.  I make mistakes like 20-15=? but I am going to work hard on it.  This is important because I want to have a great year.  If I do this, I will get better and better and maybe become a math teacher!
~Rose Anne, 2nd grade

     My New Year's Resolution is to not get mad every time I lose a game, not be very bad to my brother, and to do more push-ups.  This is important because I don't want to have a fit.  If I do these things, God will be very grateful, and my brother will love me, and I will get really strong.
~Andrew, 2nd grade

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Snowflake Sentences!

Another session of "Budding Authors and Artists" and "Awesome Authors and Artists" started up in late January.  We were inspired by winter to create beautiful snowflakes with sentences to match them!  We started with a lesson on what makes a grammatically correct sentence: Simply, it's a Noun + Verb.  But to create a sentence that is exciting to read and that paints a perfect picture in the reader's mind of what the author wants to convey, we need to add:
1. two adjectives
2. one adverb
3. a phrase or clause that tells "where"
4. a phrase or clause that tells "when"
5. The "Awesome" students also learned how to start a sentence effectively with "Because"!  They were also encouraged to peer edit and help each other move phrases or clauses around for better sounding sentences.

This is a project I love to see across the grade levels.  It's fun to watch the students' writing ability mature as they get older.  Enjoy these samples!

 The beautiful white snowflake falls gracefully at Lake Tahoe in winter.
~Alice, 1st grade

 The unique, glittering snowflake falls softly on my snowy roof on Christmas Eve.
~ Lucy, 2nd grade

The soft, pretty snowflake falls quietly and gracefully outside my window on the 1st of January.
~Tiffany, 3rd grade

Because it is snowing, the shiny snowflake falls softly on to the tip of my tongue.
~Lana, 4th grade

During the Winter Olympics, the brilliant and sparkly snowflake gracefully falls on the ski of a famous skier.
~Tyler, 5th grade

While a mysterious, shimmering twilight moon illuminates the dark forest, a single intricate and delicate snowflake drifts soundlessly on to a bed of white snow.
~Sophie, 6th grade