Read several poems or books of your choice about the four seasons to the children. After reading, hold a brief discussion with the students about what they like about a particular season.
Have the children break into four groups. Using chart paper, label one for each season next to the setting icon. Ask the groups to rotate from one “season” to another and brainstorm all the words that the particular season makes them think of. Have one student be the recorder for each group and have each group use a different color maker. Give about five minutes for each season.
At the end of the twenty-minute period, each group will have been to each season. Discuss the items listed.
Next, distribute copies of the Setting Descriptive Map and ask the children to label the categories:
Assign each child a season and ask them to complete the map using the brainstorming papers that were done the previous day.
Discuss choosing a topic sentence. List several examples on the board and ask the students for suggestions.
Finally, ask the children to write paragraphs describing the season using their setting maps as a guide. If needed, do a sample with the class or work with groups of children modeling the writing of the paragraph.
The samples below were done with third grade students at the former Juniper Park School in Westfield, Massachusetts.
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