5th Grade Writing Assignments and Lessons

All students need good writing skills in order to do well not only in school but also in life. Before your 5th grader enters middle school, it's important for him or her to have a firm grasp on the different types of writing, logical ordering and topic development. To provide your child extra practice at home, use the 5th grade writing assignment and lesson ideas below.

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Writing Lessons for 5th Grade Students

By the time they reach 5th grade, children are expected to write narratives, informative and opinion pieces that have a proper structure, supporting ideas and a strong concluding statement. To help your son or daughter practice, you can create at-home lesson plans focused on sequencing, character development, conducting research and more. Several websites offer free practice worksheets by grade level that you can print, or you can develop your own based on your child's ability. If you're still unsure of what is appropriate, consult your child's teacher for more guidance.

Three Practice Assignments

Personal Narrative

Unlike a writing prompt, the personal narrative assignment does not give students a predetermined focus or questions to answer. This exercise will give your child practice in selecting a few main points to write about and organizing those points to produce a clear and logical narrative. To get started, simply ask your child to write a narrative about her own life from a time period of her choosing. For example, it could focus on the last six months or your child's entire 2nd grade year. Once your child's narrative is complete, you can review the final draft and provide constructive feedback on story structure, transitional phrasing and the conclusion.

Editing Workshop

A great way to improve one's own writing ability is to practice editing someone else's work. It's likely that your child has traded papers to peer edit in the classroom, but he probably has little to no experience proofreading a paper for proper structure and grammar. To best help your child with this exercise, write your own short story with spelling errors, incorrect organization and unclear sentences. Allow your child to write comments regarding the edits he makes to confirm an understanding of why the changes are appropriate.

Mini Research Paper

Knowing how to conduct research is a skill that becomes more important for your child as she advances in school. Teach your child how to successfully gather information and credit sources by allowing her to choose a research topic. The final paper should be 3-5 pages long and include a full reference list. When you child has finished her paper, walk her through any corrections or questions you have to help her be more thorough in the future.

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