How do you get kids excited about procedural texts? Easy! Center your procedural writing units around fun activities like science experiments, recipe generators, or board games. These everyday activities are super adaptable to the procedural writing process and learning about things like abstract representations. Grab your students and watch a few videos before you jump into your unit on writing procedural texts. Be sure to stock up on baking ingredients, colored markers, and goo-making supplies in advance!
1. Anchor Charts
Create an anchor chart outlining the parts of a procedural text. These charts are helpful guides students can turn throughout your unit on writing. They can also serve as templates for activities later in the year!
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2. Procedural Text Video
This quick video breaks down the procedural writing process step-by-step. After explaining different types of texts, the video takes students through each part of writing procedural texts, making it an accessible writing genre! Perfect for the start of your unit.
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3. “How-To” Writing Lesson
This worksheet is great for collecting student writing samples. Following the video in the previous activity, students can pick any topic they’d like to write about for their own procedural texts. Or you can choose one theme for the students and create a collection of student writing to display!
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4. Bubble Gum Charts
Grab some bubble gum and see how big of a bubble you can create! As students blow their bubbles, have them think of the steps they’re doing. Then write them down altogether. Also great for teaching graph structures and how to duplicate actions!
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5. Dragon’s Love Tacos
Expand your classroom reading time with these fun cards! Start by explaining transition words and how to create coherent sentences. Then let your kids create the correct sequence of actions to build the perfect taco like in the book! Double-check the accuracy of the sentences they create.
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6. Picture Cards
Diversify your student writing samples with these fun topic cards. Shuffle the cards and place them face down on a table. Students pick one at random and explain the process! It can be a writing activity or a speech to practice public speaking skills.
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7. How to Make a Necklace
Use this activity on writing procedures to work on fine motor and numeracy skills. Set up an investigation table with beads, strings, and planning sheets. Help your kids follow the instructions to create colorful jewelry! Be sure to follow each instruction step carefully.
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8. Recipe Books
Ask your students to pick their favorite food as a class. Then, send them home to collect coherent recipes from their loved ones. Provide a template for them to write the cooking process on. Or use a recipe generator to create a booklet to illustrate!
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9. Back to Basics
Discover the how-tos of writing procedures with this simple anchor chart. Discuss the different types of verbs used in a sequence of actions. Then brainstorm activities for each category. The chart’s basic form makes it an amazing resource for your classroom!
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10. Transition Anchor Charts
You can’t create procedural texts without transition words! Help your students understand language features with a quick and easy chart. Once you’ve brainstormed a lot of transition words, craft coherent recipes or board game instructions together!
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11. Safety Drills
This activity is perfect for making sure your kids know how to stay safe in class. Run a safety drill. Then have your students write a step-by-step safety plan based on what you did. Discuss how important the choice of language is when giving instructions to keep people safe.
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12. Exact Instructions Challenge
These hilarious cooking videos are an amazing resource to reinforce the importance of paying attention to details. Ask your students to write a coherent recipe like in the video. Then, follow exactly what they wrote and see if the end results are edible.
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13. Exploration Activity
How-to guides are great for a number of procedural text activities! This activity builds observational skills while teaching procedural text writing. After reading the text, have your students summarize what is being made and what to do. Lastly, see if you can recreate it!
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14. Cookie How-Tos
Tasty recipes are a yummy way to build an affinity for writing procedural texts. Choose a favorite cookie and print out the recipe. Gather your ingredients and bake! Have them create a new cookie following the recipe model in front of them.
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15. Cookie Sandwiches
Following the previous activity, watch as Cookie Monster builds some tasty sandwiches. See if your kids can use the pair of recipes to build even tastier cookie sandwiches! Or scramble the two together and see if they can create coherent recipes for you to follow.
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16. Read and Sequence
Build sequences from recipes with these handy printouts. Cut out the parts of the recipe and give them to your students. Read a how-to on lemonade out loud and see if your students can put the steps in the correct order.
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17. Simple Recipes
Inspire the chefs in your class with these easy-to-follow recipes. Remind them to focus on the process, not the end result. Afterward, ask them if it was easy to follow and discuss the aspects of recipe quality.
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18. Alien Goo
This “following directions” activity is perfect for blending STEM and language arts lessons. All you need is some gel glue, borax, food coloring, and water. Be careful. If you don’t follow the directions exactly, you’ll be left with a liquid mess!
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19. Rule Books
Create safe spaces in your class while practicing how to write coherent sentences. Each week, have one student create a new rule for the classroom. Display the worksheets for everyone to see.
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20. Sports Guides
For all those sports lovers, have them describe how to play their favorite game! Ask them to be super detailed. Once they’ve finished, head outside and play it exactly as they described!
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