Writing Lesson of the Month Network

...sharing thoughtful, mentor text-inspired lessons your students will love!

Each year, the WritingFix website sponsors a Digital Photo Contest for students and teachers nationwide.  The goal is for students to take pictures that would inspire their classmates to want to write the "story behind a picture."

 

Click here to access WritingFix's Digital Photo Resource Page! 

 

At right, you see the teacher-winning digital photograph from our 2010 contest.  It was taken by teacher Amie Newberry.  You can enlarge the picture by clicking on it.

 

If you use this photo in class as a writing prompt, and then have a student like what they're writing so much that they take their writing through the writing process, we want to see their published stories posted here!

 

Post no rough drafts...please.  We're looking for polished writing inspired by this photograph!  Final drafts of stories can be pasted or attached in the "Reply to This" box below.

 

Very Important:  Teachers, please only share your students' first name and grade level with us when you post the writing on their behalf.  Do not post last names or school names, or the posts will be deleted.

 

Twenty-five Teachers every semester will win a free classroom resource!  Each semester, we choose 25 new students to publish at our online lessons directly at the world-famous WritingFix website. To have your students' writing considered, it can be posted below in the box underneath  this posting.  In November and May, we will select the 25 students whose writing impressed us the most, and if your student(s) is selected, you will be asked to choose from any of the NNWP Print Publications (http://www.unr.edu/educ/nnwp/publications.html) for us to send to your classroom.

 

Help us celebrate your writers.

 

--Corbett Harrison, WritingFix Webmaster

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Replies to This Discussion

To My Father That Once Never Cared

You see me standing here, but you are so far away. Starving for your attention, you don’t even know my name. You walk right by me. As if I was a stranger in a crowd. Don’t you miss me? Wondering how I’ve been, or even how grown up I’ve become? Can’t you see me? Do you remember and miss the times we’ve spent together, like when we felt peace and happiness. Now that you’re gone that peace and happiness has turned into war and hopelessness. I wish you could see me now, so broken and apart, from all the pain I’ve felt. You made me want to give up, stop trying and not believe in my dreams. When every time, before our world came crashing down, you told me never give up, keep trying and believe in your dreams. Though now that your not here, I’m not that strong little girl you thought I was. I dreamed about the day you’d come back, but every morning I would wake up you weren’t there. I know you were there for my first pony ride. The questions I ask myself now are, “Are you going to be there for my sweet 16?” “Are you going to be there to walk me down the isle and give me away?” I wish you could be here so I could be that daddy’s girl I always wanted to be. I can now realize that this is never going to happen.

….Goodbye Forever

Tylynn 8th grade

March 08, 2011

Seeing my father

As we reached the beach, I got a weird feeling in my stomach….I was seeing a man I had never seen, yet he was my father. It had been ten minutes and no one had said a word. I felt alone, even thought some one who loved me was standing right next to me. It really makes me wonder after all of these years, why would he come back now? Why does he want to be a part of my life when he could have done that a long, long time ago?

This all started a few days ago, when my mom introduced me to my dad. I had never seen him; I had never known he existed. For all I know, I would be fine without him. She said she got a call and it was my dad, he wanted to meet me and take me somewhere with him. Mom and my dad went out to lunch to make an agreement on what “rights of visitations” he had. I had thought to myself don’t I have any say in this? But I guess that is just part of being a kid.

So now my father has taken me to the beach…

Hailey , 7th grade

Footprints

By Abby B. – 4th Grade

The feet traveled from coast to coast

 But all that was left of them was a ghost

They’re footprints of children playing in the warm air

And people strolling without a care

But when the tide turns and the sun starts to set

The water paves the sand for yet

Another day of people walking without care

And children at play

On The Beach

By: Kathryn B. – 4th Grade

I feel the cold gust of the wind along my cheek, the chilly, soggy, rough sand beneath my petite feet, and the shallow tide washing upon my feet as I strolled along the gloomy beach with my father.

 The seagulls soar overhead in search of something to snatch. My caramel hair blows wildly in the air. I look across the turquoise ocean to see the blazing sun disappearing into the night sky.

I was growing weary and it was getting dark. So my father and I trudged uphill toward my house to rest.

A Mystery at the Sacramento Beach
By Michael , a 5th grade student

One day I went to the Sacramento beach and there was an ambulance I asked what happened here. CSI agent Carter Jenkins said The victim Adam Christian was attacked by a tiger shark when he fell off of his surf board while surfing. The next morning I went to the hospital and asked “Is Adam okay”? The nurse said “He has to have surgery tomorrow so you may go tell him get well.”

I told the nurse I was Jason Sudekis and I’m his friend. The next morning I went to the office I said “I-I’m here for evidence of the attack.” The next morning I found his family and asked if they saw anything because they were gone awfully fast so I thought they might be a suspect of his attack.

Then that night I went to his brother’s house and no body was there so then I went to the hospital. He was not there either. The next morning I went to Adam’s house he was not hurt one bit. I said, “Can I search your house?”

There it is the fake leg it was in the corner of the living room. He put it on before the ambulance had got there. He was not hurt he was a faker. That night I went to CSI agent, Jenkins, and got a job as a CSI and found many other reasons, but this is the end. This was a great mystery.
Attachments:

A poem by Gabriela, a 6th grade student

Life

-by Gabriela

I remember walking down

the beach with you.

I remember holding

your warm hand.

I remember your

laughter and smile.

I remember seeing

the beautiful sunset

with you.

And I remember

seeing how happy

you were.

But that was

then and this

is now.

I miss you

so much.

 

 

Attachments:

Among The Beach

By Leah, a 5th grade student

 

Hi my name is Kat, but you can call me Kit Kat. My dad, Rich, and I live along the beach. Dad and I never go on vacation because we live on Cancun Island. Cancun is an island by Mexico.

 

In Cancun it is usually 79˚ outside. There are plenty of water sports to do. The best thing I like to do is play on the beach, but there are many things that can happen on the beach. I once heard there was a monster that lives in the ocean.

 

I’m just kidding there is no monster, except my mom took my sister so she wouldn’t worry. My mom took her because it was dark on the beach and she thought she would drown when swimming at night.  Now you probably think my mom and dad are divorced, but my mom is just away on business.

 

When my dad got a job he hired a babysitter to watch me, but my dad didn’t know that she hated me. So one day I asked her to take me to the beach and she thought I drown. When my dad found out he fired her then I came back and my mom and sister came back and we are all a family again, and we all live in peace.

A Walk on the Beach

By Alex, grade 4

The waves crash against the shore.

The dark waves rush onto my pale feet.

The sea shells are scattered among the cool sand.

I gaze down to see my shadow casting on the beach.

The sun shines down on my face.

What a peaceful walk on the beach.

BYE-BYE, BROTHER
Eight years ago, a dad left a mom when he found out she was pregnant. The baby inside would grow up to be a boy named Leo. When he turned eight, he found out a secret. “Your father didn’t die,” his mother told him. “He left when he found out I was going to have a baby.” Little Leo was so disappointed, he ran away, looking for his father. The mom was sad about losing a child, so she decided to have another one.
How do I know this story? Well, I have the same mom as Leo. This means I have a big brother. This also means I was the “replacement child” in the story. The question “How do I know this story?” is still somewhat hanging in the air. I know this because Leo came home today. My mom is still at work, so she doesn’t know this yet. I, however, get to go to the beach with the brother I never knew I had.
We are currently walking on the beach, sadly, our minds filling with thoughts, our eyes welling up with tears. How did this happen? Let’s start from the beginning.

“Can you please tell me the story now? The real story? The long story?” I asked anxiously. We got to the beach over an hour ago, and Leo still wouldn’t tell me the long story about when he ran away.
“Fine,” Leo replied. “I was eight years old, like you, and Mom said she had something to tell me. I was a very smart and athletic kid, and everyone, including adults, like, worshiped me.”
“Seriously?” I said, doubting he was telling the truth.
“Well, maybe not worshiped, but I was very well liked, and I figured Mom had something good or nice or lucky or something to tell me. But it was the opposite of all those things. I learned that my father hadn’t died in a car crash, a plane crash or any crash at all, like Mom had said before. I found out that he didn’t even die. My father was alive. I was so upset with Mom that I ran up to my room and locked it. My mother—”
“Our!” I yelled at him. Our mom was the only person I had in my life, and she was special to me.
“Okay, our mother was a liar. No offense, but she lied to both of us, anyway. I was told my dad died, you were told you were an only child. Back to the story: I grabbed my school backpack and emptied it out. I packed a LOT of clothes, a few blankets, a flashlight and extra batteries, my phone, my—”
“I GET IT! You packed all the things you needed to survive for a while, get on with it…”
“Then, when I was sure Mom was sleeping—and I’m sure you figured out she is a very heavy sleeper—I snuck out the back door. Easy as pie.”
“What happened out there?” I asked, annoyed by the fact that he thought the story ended there.
“Well, I started off roaming the streets of Orlando, Florida, and then this lady pointed to a new building called ‘Our Home’. It was an orphanage, pretty much, but it was nice. Eventually, I was adopted, but I had as much said in the adoption as the parents, but they seemed friendly, so I figured, ‘What the heck, go with them. They probably won’t lie to you.’ They didn’t. I lived with them for eight years, and then I looked our mom up in the phone book and BAM! There you were. I took a bus here, because I just got my license, but I barely passed, so I can’t drive without adult supervision. Are you happy now? You got your long story.”
“Yes, I am happy.”

After a while of building a sand castle in the sand, the “moat” over flowed and killed the king, queen and even the princess.
“Well, Lexi, we better go, I want to say hi to Mom before I leave,” Leo said. That’s me: Lexi Davis.
“Leave? You’re leaving? I thought you were going to stay with us,” I said, totally caught off guard.
“I have to go back to my parents. They may not have given birth to me, but it feels like they did. They treated me as if I were their own. I have to go back. I promised I’d be home before dinner,” he said, that last part serving as a joke.
“No!” I yelled. “You can’t leave! Mom is never home and I’m always alone. Today was probably the best day of my life, all because of you! You have to stay!”
“But I can’t. I have other parents now,” Leo said, regretting those words as they came out of his mouth.
That’s how we ended up here. My mind is searching for something to say, but it cannot find anything. Whether to apologize or fight back, I am not able to figure that out either.
“Lexi, there’s no doubt that I want to stay with you guys, but I can’t. I love Mom, but I love my foster family too, and they raised me without any lies,” Leo said, a bit calmer now.
“I know,” I said, a sob rising in my throat. “It’s just that I was always alone, but then you came. Bored, tired, and a selfish crab was all that I was. But now you’re here, and I feel like a different person. Even at school I don’t have any friends. Can you ask your foster parents if you can stay here? Please?” I said, bawling.
Leo pulled me in for a hug. I really needed one, too. I just cried for a moment, thinking back and searching for ideas that I could use to make myself a better person. As I started to drop the hug, I realized Leo was crying too. I hugged him even tighter, and neither one of us ever pulled away.



Tyanne 5th grade
My Dad and I
On the ocean I lay a-stare
smelling the salt scented air.
I was walking out with my dad
he always made me oh so glad.
The mud was smooth beneath my toes
by now the salty air was stinging my nose.
Then I looked up at my dad as happy as could be
then he looked down and smiled at me.

Emily 5th grade

Shells

 

After dinner when the waves were quite thinner

my daughter and I look for shells on the beach of St.Miner .

 

 

As we’re walking hand in hand,

we saw colors gleaming in the sand.

 

 

We knelt down to see all shells that we spotted.

I asked my daughter if she liked them

And  joyfully she nodded.

 

 

We gathered shells all evening long,

one of the shells even looked like King Kong.

 

 

With our things it’s time to depart,

this will make great art.

 

 

By:  Caleb

Wondering

 

I stood there,

cautiously looking upon the waves,

Just standing there,

in my new pale blue sun dress,

with the pink bow around my waist,

flowing in the wind

 

My blonde hair swept up in a bun,

I stand there,

a worried expression on my face,

thinking.

 

What would happen

if the crashing waves disappeared,

If the sand washed away

and the shells disintegrated?

 

What would happen

if all these things were gone?

 

What would the world become

if these things happened?

 

Would the world be able to survive

without them?

 

By: Wondering (Hannah)

 

 

 

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