Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Author's Purpose is more fun than a bucket of cookies!

Have you ever taught a lesson that went so well that it made your whole day? Well, I taught that lesson today!

We've been working a lot on author's purpose lately. We've practiced the purposes for writing, had a gallery walk to expose us to examples of each purpose, and used an organizer to break down a text and determine the purpose. That means that today, it was time to assess.

The original plan was to give each student a doughnut and a purpose. I wanted them to use their doughnut as inspiration to write a paragraph to fit their assigned purpose. However, it was so late by the time I got to the store last night to get doughnuts, all they had left were doughnut flavors that were less than kid-friendly. So, I got bucket of M&M cookies instead.

I used index cards and wrote "persuade", "inform" or "entertain" on each card. Students chose a card randomly and then used their cookie to write a paragraph to fit that purpose. Our number one rule was "I may not eat the cookie until AFTER I have finished my final draft".  I was surprised, but students were very diligent and did not eat their cookies until they were done. After they completed their rough draft, I checked it for conventions, and then they wrote their final drafts. 

Students really had fun with this activity and were so engaged!! (Or maybe they all just wanted to get done so they could eat their cookies!) The students were so focused on what they were doing and they did a great job! I could tell after reading their paragraphs that they really understood each purpose. As promised, here are some pictures of the kids working and the final products:

  Can you guess the purpose of each one? (Persuade, Inform, Entertain). These are too good to just display in my trailer, so I'm going to find some hallway space in the main building for this awesome work! (I don't know about you, but I totally love the one about the cookie giving him a wedgie!)

Don't forget that this activity is available in my TpT store as part of my Author's Purpose Teaching Pack and also as part of my Author's Purpose Activity Sheets. Click the button below to purchase from my TpT store!

Also, don't forget to click the button below to download my FREE (yes FREE) Author's Purpose Anchor Charts!


  1. Found this activity on Pinterest! What a great way to do author's purpose- thanks for sharing it! I'm your newest follower.
    Conversations in Literacy

  2. Wow... I am putting this in my plans right now! Thanks for sharing.