Empowering Writers

“The Big Hairy Giant” – Narrative Annotated Sample

Narrative: The Big Hairy Giant

The student sample below showcases the use of the Magic of Three, a narrative skill that gives the reader a sense of anticipation or worry.  The value of suspense is that is keeps the reader reading. When I pick up a book to read out loud to my students, those that include an anticipatory sense of wonder or worry are the ones they beg for.  During our reading we identify those nail-nibbling passages and begin to understand how they point to some significant event about to take place.  This enhances the plot, building story tension.  I also stop at these crucial moments and ask students to predict what might happen next, using their contextual knowledge to apply some inferential reasoning – after they make their predictions they BEG me to read on!  Thus, by highlighting this one skill – suspense – my students read the passage more closely, looking for elements of suspense, and then we use that to inspire and create a writing segment.  Always powerful to teach close reading AND powerful writing at the same time!

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