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Personal Narrative Writing (Grades 2-5)

Personal narrative poster and graphic organizer

You Can Build Your Students’ Writing Confidence With An Easy-to-Implement Personal Narrative Unit

When it comes to writing, there is so much we want (and need) to teach our students. However, we cannot focus on all of it all at once or we will cause our students to hate writing. Too much, too soon can lead to discouragement.

Personal narrative writing is always a great place to start the year because it allows your students to write about a topic they are familiar with–themselves!

I have broken these personal narrative units down into easy to implement lesson plans and have included all of the materials you need to get your students writing.

Personal narrative graphic organizer, posters, rubric, mentor text

Each Personal Narrative Writing Unit (Grades 2-5) has 12 lessons. The lessons can be implemented at an easy pace—spread out over four weeks, or can be condensed to be taught in a shorter time period.

A mentor text is included. It allows you to have a text right at your fingertips, that covers the content you will be teaching. Throughout the unit you’ll be able to reference the mentor text explicitly as you teach.

Since there are twelve personal narrative lessons, you have time to build in any of your own mini-lessons you feel your class needs. (For instance, if you see your students are struggling with a particular skill, such as capitalizing proper nouns, you can spend a day practicing that skill without falling behind with the unit.)

These lessons are included:

  1. Brainstorming Topics
  2. Picking a Small Moment
  3. Remembering Details
  4. Writing a Skeleton Outline
  5. Developing a Strong Introduction
  6. Writing the First Draft
  7. Writing as a Paragraph
  8. Adding Details (Concrete Details for 4th and 5th Grade)
  9. Writing a Conclusion
  10. Editing With a Partner
  11. Revising & Revisiting the Rubric
  12. Publishing

The units include a student-friendly rubric as well as a checklist they can use as they write. They help keep students focused on the skills taught during the unit, without overwhelming them.

Posters are provided to help teach certain skills. You can print them and put them in students’ writing notebooks. This allows them to reference them at any time.

I teach multiple grade levels. Are the units different?
The units are mostly similar, but include different mentor texts, and have different examples in the centers. There are a few other minor differences throughout the units that reflect grade level expectations.

Click the images below to see more & preview the personal narrative unit for your grade level.

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