Are your students writing in fragments? Often times students will write an incomplete sentence and it will cause confusion to the reader and disrupt the flow of the paragraph. These ideas are ideal for any writing curriculum and are a part of a series of mini lessons for writer’s workshop designed for scaffolding through sentence structure, paragraph writing, and the writing process. Read on to learn how to teach students to correct FRAGMENTS.
I like to show an image for my visual learners so I use a broken heart for fragments! Make the heart complete with a complete sentence. As a whole group, we review yesterday’s COMPLETE SENTENCES lesson and then discuss the meaning of fragments using the following anchor chart. A FRAGMENT is a group of words missing a subject or predicate. It is an incomplete sentence.
Is the incomplete sentence missing a subject? Shopping for a car. Make it complete: My dad was shopping for a car.
Is the incomplete sentence missing a predicate? A lawn service. Make it complete: A lawn service came to trim our bushes.
2. TAKE NOTES
To help students understand the meaning of a fragment, take notes in a writing notebook. This will be a great reference to remind students of the skill in the future. Students should take notes and write examples. Use INTERACTIVE WRITING NOTEBOOKS or interactive digital notes. Research supports using interactive note-taking through studies on multiple intelligence, note-taking, and the brain! Here are a few videos about SETTING UP INTERACTIVE WRITING NOTEBOOKS.
3. GROUP OR PARTNER WORK
Have students practice correcting fragments by creating 5 fragments and exchanging it with a shoulder partner. Their shoulder partner then makes them complete sentences! When students complete this task, they should share their samples with a small group or the whole group.
Share some of the student-made fragments and corrections with the class.
5. INDEPENDENT PRACTICE
Provide some sort of independent practice to see if each student understands fragments and complete sentences. Either provide fragments for students to put into complete sentences or provide fragments and complete sentences and have students identify them. Worksheets and task cards work well in the classroom, homeschool and centers. For distance learning, I like self-check practices.
Students should now apply their knowledge by writing in complete sentences. Give them a topic or prompt to write about in their writing notebooks. Tell them to underline the subject and circle the predicate in each sentence like the previous lesson to assure they do not have fragments in their paragraph!
7. INDEPENDENT ASSESSMENT
Once you think your students had enough practice, give them an independent assessment and track their progress. This useful information can be used with forming small instructional groups or end of year review.
I hope this helps you in your classroom!
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Do you need a complete NO PREP Sentence Structure Unit? There are anchor charts, interactive notebooks pages, practice, assessents and more for each of the following: Complete Sentences, Fragments, Run-On Sentences.
This lesson is also included in the STEP-BY-STEP WRITING® Program with mini-lessons designed to scaffold through the writing process. Writing units included are sentence structure, paragraph writing, narrative writing, opinion writing, and informative writing. See what is included in the image below and click on it to learn more about them! You will turn your reluctant writers into ROCKSTAR WRITERS™!
You are an angel! Not only is this a spectacular resource but my students are constantly engaged. I’ve never used an interactive notebook type resource before and I am sold! The children are learning without realising it and I have never had such success with narrative writing across so many students. I am pleasantly amazed. Looking forward to moving onto the other text types as the year progresses (calendar year in Australia). Thank you so much! -Mrs