Martin Luther King Jr. Opinion Writing with Martin's Big Words

Last week I focused on Martin Luther King Jr. during my writing and word work time. I wanted to share a few activities that we completed in case you were looking for something that was short and sweet, but still helped you cover some of your CCSS standards.

For our word work time I am focusing on prepositions, which was difficult for my smarties to identify in a sentence before break.  I'll be using Martin's Big Words as my mentor text, and since I don't reinvent the wheel, my mentor sentence work came from Ideas by Jivey and her mentor sentence lesson for the week.  It is part of this [Unit].  If you haven't used mentor sentences before, Jessica is a great go to person.  She has several different webcasts you can listen to, and she has written many good blog posts about how to get started.

Beyond the basics of word work with the text, we are also working on opinion writing, so my review/focus is based on opinions.  I took the "Big Words" from the text... Freedom, Peace, Together, Love, and Dream, and we worked on deciding which word was the most powerful.  Together we crafted an opinion paragraph using OREEEO as our organizer.  No, that isn't a typo... I don't use just OREO.. my students are required to give me more.. so we go for TRIPLE STUFFED!
O-opinion, R-reason, E- evidence, E-evidence, E- elaboration (give me the how and/or why connection, O-opinion/transition.  We even had triple stuffed Oreos as a quick reminder snack when we started this discussion.

In their paragraphs, students had to choose which of Martin's words they felt was the most powerful, provide a reason,  back it up with evidence from the text, and then elaborate or extend the connection. I borrowed a few copies of this book from other classrooms in my building, and I also used a reading on YouTube, (You can go [HERE] for it online), so my students had extra access to the book.
We wrote our final copies on a half sheet I created, and then we completed a directed drawing for our bulletin board.  I don't do too many directed drawings with my fourth graders, but I thought this might be a good opportunity to practice some listening skills work since we have been out for 2 weeks.  The directed drawing directions I found for free [HERE].  I love the way they turned out.

Need to order Martin's Big Words?  Click the picture below. (Amazon Affiliate)

Do you have plans for Martin's Big Words that I can add to my list for next year?  I would love to hear about them!

May the Force Be With You,

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