I think Mother Nature is confused.  This is Georgia, people.

I took this picture from my front porch earlier this afternoon.  I think we have between 2-3 inches (please don’t laugh at us, seasoned weather vets).  Roads are NUTS.  Schools didn’t close in time and kids will be stuck there overnight.  Yes, you read that correctly.  School buses are still stuck on the road.  WITH kids. I can’t even imagine.  My husband’s 1 hour commute took SEVEN hours. It is gridlocked and scary.

But, anyway.  You want to read this whole post to the bottom. Pretty please :).

A few weeks ago I got a Facebook message from a friend of mine from the school.  I am sure the message is one most of you can related to.  It said something along the lines of, ” I am tired, over worked, and can’t think of a single creative idea for informational writing.  Please help me and see if you can spark the creative juices.”

 I got sucked in like nobody’s business and had ALL KINDS of ideas. And once I get started on something, I have a hard time letting go.  The idea gets bigger, and bigger, and bigger until I am usually squashed by the snowball.  My coteacher and  I always joked last year that if there was a hard way and an easy way to do something, we inevitably took the hard way and adjusted it to make it as complicated as we possibly could! LOL!

So that simple little spark my friends asked for turned into this and this.

I wrote two different units.  The Georgia Hero Unit is specifically aimed at Georgia third grade teachers and the Famous African Americans Unit is specifically aimed at third grade teachers in states that are using the Common Core Standards. 
The units are mostly identical, except for the people being researched.  All of the lessons are the same, so there is no need for teachers to purchase both.  We would all just be sad :(.
This thing is HUGE- over 130 pages each!  It is pretty much your entire informational writing unit with every informational writing standard addressed EXCEPT for publishing with technology.  I specifically left this out because I did want to make any assumptions about a teacher’s technological resources (or lack thereof).

Included in the pack are 23  days of EXPLICIT lesson plans for students to select, research ,write, revise and edit a four paragraph essay about a Georgia Hero or famous African American.

Students use Post It Notes and a flip book to order and record research.  Flipbook and step-by-step instructions are included.  Small, mini books are included on all the Georgia Heroes (except for Caser Chavez and Lyndon B. Johnson) and on all 6 famous African Americans.
Two page list of suggested, authentic texts is included.
Tons of materials to teach the informational lessons, including 6 posters.
You can get your packs here and here.
For the next few hours this is going on:
Better hurry!  It won’t last long!!
I also created an abbreviated pack of the famous African American unit.
I also created an abbreviated version of the Informational Unit Focusing on Famous African Americans with two exceptions.  I added  a different graphic organizer and  the comprehension questions  for each figure.  It is 43 pages and is a steal at only $3!
For each
famous figure there is:
  • ·     A mini book for students to read and
    use for research
  • ·     Three comprehension questions about
    the mini book
  • ·     Answer key for the questions
  • ·     Graphic organizer about the figure’s
  • ·     A list of suggested resources for
    additional research
  • ·     Paper for students to write a final
       However if you buy EITHER the Informational Writing Unit Focusing on Georgia Heroes or Famous African Americans, you get this free. Simply email me at mandyholland@hotmail.com and I will send it to you!
And last thing, if you don’t follow my store,  you want to.  Trust me ;).

Published by Mandy Gregory

Mandy Gregory is a 2007 and 2012 Teacher of the Year. She has taught 4th, 3rd, and 2nd grade in both the general education and inclusion setting. She is the owner and creator of the Teaching Tips website (www.mandygregory.com) and has over 10 years of experience. She is married with two beautiful children.

4 replies on “Teaching Informational Writing”

  1. I am a new follower too! I am in Statesboro and so far we just have Ice, no snow yet. I am so sad for those babies stuck without their families!

  2. I can't believe kids will be stuck overnight at school! That's crazy!! I can relate to the comment about how if you can do something the easy or hard way, you'll probably do it the hard way. It looks like you put a TON of heart & soul into your new products 🙂
    Stories by Storie

  3. Here in COLD NY… they interviewed people in our local mall about what happened in your neck of the woods. A lot of the people were saying how a few inches here is a walk in the park, but in the south… they just don't know what to do. I do feel your pain.. I lived in the south for two years.. but grew up in NY and came back.

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