Opinion Writing isn’t as hard as you think. It’s all about routine and teaching them how to tell what they like. Follow these steps to confidently teach!
Students in the elementary grades are tasked with writing opinion paragraphs. Teachers are nervous about teaching it…and students think they can’t do it. Everyone needs to breathe.
Opinion writing: It’s no big deal.
Any student can tell you why they like one breakfast cereal over another.
They can also tell you why they think one holiday is better than the other.
AND, if their brother or sister wants to watch a certain television show, they can certainly argue about why their television show is better.
Use that to your advantage!
When introducing opinion writing, just tell them they need to convince someone they are right!
Step 1 Give their opinion with 3 Reasons
First, they’ll list three reasons they love dogs.
Next, they’ll list three reasons they love cats.
These reasons can be bullet points, either written by the teacher or interactively.
Step 2 Vote On 1 opinion
Once you have the bulleted lists, take a vote!
We voted using tally marks (this was a current math skill) and we determined what we would write about.
Step 3 Write About it their opinion
Finally, use the pre-write to write a whole group opinion pieces. In the sample to the right there is an introduction sentence and a closing sentence that mirror each other.
The middle sentences are just putting their bulleted ideas into complete sentences.
It’s so exciting watch them express their opinions.
extending opinion Lessons
The perfect persuasive paragraph revolves around Groundhog Day.
Who doesn’t have an opinion on whether winter should stay or go?
BUT, we’re too early to talk about that now.
There is an Opinion Writing SAMPLE FREEBIE that contains 2 separate pre-write planning papers and 4 center cards…just make sure it’s the pre-write. (Just click the link above.)
That is, the students aren’t finished with their opinion paragraph until the use the pre-write to form their argument.
They may decide which side they would like to persuade the reader. Providing the writing paper with a place for a picture can help students add details from their arguments to support their side of the argument.
When students are done with the whole group lesson or two, opinion paragraphs can be a part of the WRITING CENTER. Providing students with ideas for opinion paragraphs is just the start they need to be off and running.
Which do you like best?
Put blank opinion writing pre-write papers in the center along with choice boards. They must plan their arguments BEFORE they write their paragraph.
Adding an introduction sentence to beginning and a closing sentence at the end…to “hamburger” their arguments, the students can check the persuading paragraph off their list of “must do’s.”
If you’d like the entire unit for $4.00, please visit my TPT store for the Opinion Writing for Early Learners.