"My mom is a great mom. She takes care of me when I'm sick. She is a really good cook. She helps me with my homework. My mom is the best."
The above paragraph is an example of a child's early attempt to put several sentences together to support the main idea or topic "My mom is a great mom." What the paragraph lacks is elaboration or details. When I work with students on writing a good paragraph, I tell them "If you mention something, tell more about it." In other words, if you mention in one sentence that "she takes care of me when I'm sick" - the next sentence should be an example of how she does that. The next sentence should "tell more about" the previous sentence. I tell the student that she needs to support or prove the statement that mom takes care of you. When finished, the above paragraph might look something like this:
"My mom is a great mom. She takes care of me when I'm sick. I always feel better when she brings me ginger ale and hot chicken noodle soup. Mom is a really good cook. My favorite dinner is her spaghetti because she makes spicy meatballs for the sauce. She also helps me with my homework. I have a hard time with math, so mom sits with me and helps me understand the problems. My mom sure is the best!"
That paragraph may still need some work, but it's a better paragraph than the original. In my next blog I'll address how to help your child not begin every sentence with the same word. Take another look at the original paragraph. Three sentences in a row begin with "she."
Adding the detail sentences helped take care of that problem, but there are other strategies for helping your child not begin every sentence with "I" or "They."
See you next time. Jan
I have over 20 years classroom teaching experience and for the last 8 years have tutored students in grades K-5th one-on-one. Please click "Meet the Tutor" to learn more.