An Introduction to Readability Levels
I began homeschooling over thirty years ago when Ray and I taught my younger sister (who was in eighth grade at the time) in our home. During my first several years of homeschooling, I used early readers when my children were first learning to read, but I did not care for “readers” for older children. I always felt that abridged or excerpted stories were inferior—and that children should read whole books.
I love teaching Opening and Closing Paragraphs! By this time, my students have their amazing essays or reports written—and they are ready to show them off by writing poignant openings that draw readers in and closings that leave the reader satisfied.
Many of my students are very serious and conscientious about their Opening and Closing Paragraphs (as seen in the video below!), and they make me super proud of their efforts!
There are many ways to open and/or close an essay or report. Here are some general tips about opening paragraphs and closing paragraphs that writers of longer essays and reports (four paragraphs or more) should consider:
The class: Senior High Composition. The place: Union City Community High School. The teacher: Mr. Leahey. The year: 1981. The student: Me….formerly straight A student for the last two years of high school…on the brink of breaking that perfect streak.
Yep, it snowed and snowed and snowed and snowed.
And this girl, who had let herself get behind on creating two hundred index cards of information for her senior paper on Robert Kennedy, had a chance for redemption.
I recently had the misfortune of seeing a sign outside a chicken franchise that read hot, juicy, chicken. You can imagine my outrage!!!
It, of course, took us here at Language Lady to Comma Clues #2: Use Commas to Separate Two or More Describers (But Not Between the Describer and the Word Being Described!).
Two benchmarks that I teach for inserting commas between describers:
Students writing stories this week? Parents/teachers helping kids with stories this week?
Follow this “describing tip” we use with our student to help with the descriptions in your writing:
“Only use an adjective that will cause your reader to have a different picture in his mind than he would have without the adjective.”
1. They use my Directed Writing Approach!
In my Directed Writing Approach, every detail of every project is laid out for your student. None of my writing projects are “writing ideas” or “writing prompts.” Every writing assignment contains step-by-step instructions with much hand-holding along the way. The student is “directed” in how to write and what to write at all times—from brainstorming to research to outlining to rough draft and finally to revising.