Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Adverbs and Dancing Pigs

SOL#2   Adverbs and Dancing Pigs!

Yesterday I was using a mentor sentence from a book called The Snowglobe Family.  Teaching life was rolling along... sentence analysis with revision sentences being created by fifth grade writers.

Next on the agenda, a brief lesson creating sentences using adverbs.  Distributing base sentences to groups of students...  "The dog barked."  "The children played."  My personal favorite:  "The pig danced."

As I walked around the room noticing the usual  sentence revisions with adverbs:  "The dog barked loudly."  "The children played yesterday."  The dancing pig group extended their sentence as follows:  "The pig danced happily."  "The pig danced happily in the mud."  "The pig danced happily in the mud yesterday."  Thinking to myself, I have found the grand finale group!  (The emphasis on the words "in the mud" is key because we have been working on adding preposistional phrases to our sentences... please keep this in mind as you continue!)

Share... share... share...  Now for the dancing pig!

The group was ecstatic that their sentence was extended unlike everyone else's!  So as we began analyzing the use of adverbs...  I get to the words "in the mud".   In my excitement for this group, I ask the students: "Okay, what is in the mud?"  The response from the entire class, "The pig!"

I did one of those... SMH moments... then dove in again!  "Let's try this again... What IS in the mud?" (All the while, I am using both hands creating "air" parentheses to remind them how we designate prepositional phrases in sentences.)  Choral response from fewer students, just as enthusiastic but a litttle less confident:  "Pigs!?!"

As I reflect about this teaching moment, I giggle and am reminded, with all the pressures and pleasures of teaching... God allows me to experience humor and keeps me grounded with the truth:  I teach children not grammar, not sentence revision, not sentence analysis, not adverbs.  Really, I teach kids who love to laugh and learn!  Blessed!


  1. My sentence would add figurative language (sixth grade): "The pig danced happily, like a leprechaun who found his pot of gold!" Having fun -- THAT'S the ticket! Jennifer Sniadecki

    1. Sounds like you have a creative and fun bunch, Jennifer! That IS the ticket! I read my piece to the kids in class today... they just clapped! I <3ed it!