Activities and Lessons
for Language Arts

Descriptive Writing Using "Zoomers"
~ Deb Johnson

I collect paper towel rolls or T.P. rolls. I have them write about our classroom-like a grocery store list story (In my room we have a globe, map, chairs, desks, etc.) Then, I read "Zoom" and "Rezoom" showing how to zoom in. I now have the students look at our classroom zooming in using their "zoomers." I have them do a rewrite using something they have zoomed in on in our classroom adding detail to that item, how we have used it, past learning with that object, etc. For classes that really struggle, I model my own story on the overhead with a first write and then a rewrite before I let them try each. Throughout the school year, we refer back to this and the kids often pull out their Zoomers when they are writing to help them focus on one item. During revision conferences, I might bring up this concept if they are having trouble focusing on an idea. After they zoom in on what they want to write about, we list as many questions about the detail to answer through their writing.

I have seen great improvement in their writing through this.

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