Archive for February 2014

Persuasive Letters to the Library

photo (13)To kickstart the persuasive writing unit in grade 4, I asked the ELL students what they could do if there was a book they really loved to read, but it wasn’t in the AISB library.  Somebody suggested they could go talk to the library about ordering that book and that spurned our latest persuasive writing assignment.

The task was to choose a book they really wanted added to the school library, and develop a strong persuasive argument, that they would eventually read to the librarian, to try and persuade the library to order the book.

To get them excited about the assignment, I interviewed Gael Reilly, the librarian, about what is involved in the ordering process for the library.  Here is what she said:

In planning, they used readwritethink’s Persuasion Map.  Some of them opted for the printed version, while others used the on-line planning tool.  This graphic organizer allowed the students to come up with three main reasons why the library should add the book and then 3 additional evidences or facts to support each of those reasons.  It also helped them structure their argument with the introduction and the conclusion and linking words to introduce each supporting argument.

Some of the students did not want to be videoed during the presentation to Mrs. Reilly, so I used Audioboo to record the audio presentation.

Yeonatan’s persuasive argument for ‘Captain Underpants and the Terrifying Return of the Tippy Twinkle Trousers’

Yousef’s persuasive argument for ‘Daddy Swallowed a Hedgehog’

The rest of the students didn’t mind being videoed, so please enjoy the video below showing them reading their persuasive arguments in the following order:

(1) Anita for La Freccia Azzurra. (2) Anna for The Pigeon Needs a Bath. (3) Theo Van Peski for Timmy Failure: Now Look What You Have Done. (4) Sasha Vartic for Vlad’s Journey Into the Other Realm. (5) Anelise Kato for any Percy Jackson book in Brazilian Portuguese. (6)Zeynep Yuksel to have any Theo sisters books (Geronimo Stilton’s sister) be published in Turkish.


Persuasive letters to the library from AISB EAL on Vimeo.


In order to teach the concept of perspective to my two fourth grade English language learners, we used the Anthony Browne text, Willy and Hugh.

I asked then who is telling the story and they answered, “the writer”. I asked if they could write it from anybody else’s point of view and they rightfully suggested the characters in the book – Hugh, Willy, and Busta Nose.
Their task was to re tell the story from another perspective, or another point of view. They used Show Me and Educreations to record their narratives. Educreations would probably be my first choice if we were to do this again, because it allows you to have more than 10 slides.

Willy and Hugh from Willy’s perspective

Willy and Hugh from Hugh’s perspective

Connor McGovern Jersey