If your second grade students are working on opinion writing or persuasive writing, you may be looking for a few tools to get started. Here are some resources to help.
Opinion Writing Resources
Back when the Common Core was first being implemented in our state, I was diving into opinion writing without a road map telling me where to go. I turned to Pinterest and found this anchor chart. The original source was Live, Love, Laugh, Learn First Grade, which no longer seems to be an active blog:
My next stop was Teachers Pay Teachers to see what was out there.
Most of these were created for first grade, but I needed to start somewhere.
Opinion Writing Books
Like all of my other writing units, I begin with picture books that model the text features I want my students to include in their own writing. Here are a few choices to get started:
- Facts vs. Opinions vs. Robots
- I Want a Dog: An Opinion Essay
- I Wanna Iguana
- Hey, Little Ant
- Can I Be Your Dog?
- Stella Writes an Opinion
- A Pig Parade is a Terrible Idea
- One Word From Sophia
- Don’t Feed the Bear
- The Big Bed
- Duck! Rabbit!
- The Perfect Pet
- Dog vs. Cat
You can find even more book options for opinion writing by clicking the image below:
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Opinion Writing Anchor Charts
After reading some books, I talk about what second graders are expected to do according to Common Core. This is when I introduce our anchor chart. When first introduced, all that is showing is the title and the CCSS, not the example paragraph.
I like _ because _.
I prefer _ to because ___.
I believe _ because .
In case you’re wondering, they are not allowed to say “because it’s cool”, “because it’s the best”, “because they’re great” or anything along those lines. It must be a specific reason! To really drive this point home, we use thumbs up or thumbs down in the whole group. A student will state an opinion using a sentence frame. Students will give a thumbs up or thumbs down letting their peers know if the reasons are specific or not.
Once my students have the frames down, it’s time to start building on it. At this point of the year, my students already know and understand topic and conclusion sentences. This is when I go back and write a sample paragraph (the bottom half of the standards poster). Since they are used to 5 sentence paragraphs, this doesn’t really shock them.
Opinion Writing Graphic Organizer
Then I introduce a prewrite. I’m sure many of you have seen the OREO idea. It really is catchy! The plan you see on the right is what we use when first starting out (once my kids catch on, they don’t need a formal plan sheet, but can create their own in their writing notebooks). The topic goes on the top line. The first rectangle is for the topic sentence. The three rectangles with cloud bubbles are for the reasons/examples. The bubbles are there to remind students to choose sentence starters. The bottom rectangle is for the conclusion sentence.
When we start writing, I choose the topics and prompts for my students. However, later on they can choose their own topics. Here is what my anchor chart tends to look like. FYI – I tend to stick more to the top two tiers, but the real-world category motivates many second graders!
Opinion Writing Examples
Since we tend to do this unit in the spring, you can incorporate your writing into Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gifts!
Thanks for sticking with me. Here are your freebies:
I hope this has given you a new idea or two for opinion writing! If you missed out on the other writing posts, no worries. Click below to check them out!