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Language Arts Curriculum Guide - page 38 / 70





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Author’s Chair/Share: A literacy event in which a student reads his writing to an audience. The student is responsible for interpreting that story for the audience. In the discussion period afterwards, the reader has to answer questions about the author’s motives and intentions. He/she listens and responds to class’ reaction to the story.

Cloze Activity: This term refers to a variety of sentence completion techniques in which words are strategically left out of a text so that readers can supply the missing words using context only or, sometimes, limited graphophonic cues. Cloze tests can be designed to provide informal diagnostic information.

Collaborative Writing: Students work together to compose an essay, report, etc. By composing together, students experience and participate in the complete writing process in a non-threatening environment and create a model text that can be used for future reference.

Elements of a Story:

  • Character – the people or animals who take part in the story

  • Character Development – the change in a character from the beginning to the end

  • Characterization – the ways of showing what a character is like (e.g. appearance, speaks, acts, name, sex. nationality, race, traits, age, relationship to others, occupation, opinions, problems, background, personality, importance, emotions, values)

  • Main Character – The person or animal the story is mostly about. The most important character.

  • Minor Character – The less important people or animals. They give opinions or pose problems for the main character.

  • Protagonist – The hero (usually the main character) of the story who is faced with a conflict.

  • Antagonist – The villain of the story who creates conflict for the main character.

  • Plot – The events of a story

  • Setting – Where and when the action takes place in a story. The setting includes the sounds, smells, sights, and tastes a character may be experiencing.

  • Conflict – a fight or difference of opinion. A struggle between opposing forces. In a story there can be a conflict between a character and nature, a conflict in the mind of a character, or a conflict between protagonist and an antagonist.

Genres of Writing:

  • Expository – Expository writing is based on fact. It provides information to the reader. Its purpose is to define, describe, explain, inform, or expand a concept through example, metaphor, or anecdotes. Expository writing:

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      Tells how or why something is to be done

      • o

        Enlightens the reader

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        Expands a central idea through definitions, examples, details, comparisons, metaphors, analyses, lists of key steps

      • o

        Is based on research (reading, experience, interviews, etc.)

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        May be a personal essay based on personal thoughts and observations

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        Offers factual, unbiased, and expansive information

      • o

        Is engaging and compelling

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