I share a year 10 class – I see them twice a fortnight. Having them such a limited number of times makes it hard to follow the usual program, so it’s become a time for me and the students to engage in some fun literacy activities. This week I decided to do some Easter based creative writing with the class… but seriously it could just be called ‘chocolate based’ if your kids aren’t into Easter. Below is a super quick overview of the lesson, as I know I will want to return to it again in the future.
1. I filled an empty photocopy paper box with a bag of small solid chocolate Easter eggs. I put the lid on, and went into class shaking the box singing ‘What’s in the box? What’s in the box?’ (Aussie teachers will know the tune, hehe) and gave students a slip of paper on which they had to write their guess. I told them that I wanted them to impress me with their creativity and curiosity. I told them this was the opposite of Maths – they’d get more points for being wrong than right!
2. Students then read out their one or two sentence descriptions of what was in the box – every student – and it was fun celebrating the weirdness of their guesses! We had frozen fingers, severed fingers, a collection of frozen tears, a small city under siege, the rumbling ocean, and a thunderstorm. Of course, we also had kids who said ‘chocolate Easter eggs’, haha!
3. I then gave each student a chocolate egg – with the instruction that they could touch it, listen to it, smell it, look closely at it, and take a teeny tiny lick of it, BUT they couldn’t eat it! I then gave them the task: write a 100 word (exactly) description of the egg using sensory imagery, figurative language, and strong active verbs – it had to be present tense. This 100 word description activity I stole from Prue Green from literally years ago!
4. I gave them each a new piece of paper for their writing – and a new challenge! They had to write from the character perspective I gave them – and I wanted to hear that character through strong narrative voice. Coming up with 25 different perspectives I realised was hard – so enlisted some enthusiastic kids to write some for me. You can see some of them in the photo below.
5. Students then handed their 100 word descriptions to me, and I handed them out randomly to other students, who then read them, tried to identify the character perspective, wrote it on the paper, and returned it to the original writer. Kids loved this!! Lots of laughter was in the room.
So that’s it… I was going to add a photo of an example response, but I left them st work – sorry! Give this activity a go… so damn fun!