Writing Non-Fiction For an Audience
Seesaw is a web-based and application platform where students can post pictures from the classroom, annotate, speak their mind, and create electronic portfolios that connect school and home. Parents are able to see student work as soon as it is posted.
In this activity, students write an informational piece of writing and read it to their audience on SeeSaw.
Be able to choose a topic and write at least three facts with details about their topic.
- Informational Piece of Writing: Informational writing is a type of nonfiction writing that conveys information about something, which means it is factual. Many examples of informational writing can be found in newspapers, almanacs, and reference books.
To prepare for this lesson:
- Before the lesson, teachers must set up SeeSaw accounts for their class and invite parents to join.
- Please view the TEACHER video on creating SeeSaw accounts.
- Students should also know the basic features of SeeSaw.
- Please see the STUDENT VIDEO on using SeeSaw.
- Teachers will need journal paper or “informational writing paper” available to students. There are many templates that can be found using Google.
- The organizer will include:
- Topic Sentence
- Facts 1-3
- The organizer will include:
Note: SeeSaw has many other tutorials on their website and Help Center.
See Accommodations Page and Charts on the 21things4students.net site in the Teacher Resources.
Directions for this activity:
The teacher begins by asking students “Who reads your writing?” Student answers will include people in the classroom and also their family at home if journals go home.
The teacher then asks, “what types of writing do we write?” Students should answer journal writing, stories, nonfiction, etc…
The teacher explains that today when students work on writing, they are going to write to teach somebody something, post their writing to SeeSaw and read it aloud for their audience.
Teacher and students discuss nonfiction topics that they like to write about. Students may say:
Next, students and teacher talk about reading an informational text out loud to someone and how to help their reader understand their story. Students may say:
Include a diagram.
Point to the words.
Students create their informational writing on journal paper and color a picture to match. When finished, the students will upload their writing to SeeSaw.
In SeeSaw, students press the “+” sign, then select the camera icon to take a photo of their writing.
Next, students tap the microphone and record themselves reading their writing aloud.
When finished, students select the green check to add it to their journal.
Here is a photo of the steps to add and explain a photo in SeeSaw:
Different options for assessing the students:
- Check for understanding
- Teachers can see what students have posted to their journal from the Teacher side of SeeSaw. They are able to leave feedback for students and intervene with any student who did not read their story or added more detail then they wrote about. The teacher can also talk about how their writing might help someone to continue the discussion about audience.
MITECS COmpetencies & ISTE STANDARDS
MITECS: Michigan adopted the "ISTE Standards for Students" called MITECS (Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students) in 2018.
6d. Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.
Devices and Resources
SeeSaw works on all devices, but works best on devices with a camera and microphone.
CONTENT AREA RESOURCES
Students take more care when they know someone will be reading and reacting to their writing. Having a purpose to write helps motivate students to try hard on their work. Seesaw provides a platform for students to have a larger audience than the classroom walls.
Write informative/explanatory texts in which they introduce a topic, use facts and definitions to develop points, and provide a concluding statement or section.
This task card was created by Lacey Khon, KRESA, November 2018. Updated November 2021.