Kindergarten sentence writing can be made easy! Check out how I introduce sentence writing as a literacy center. Then, we build on it to make this a year-long literacy activity.
Kindergarten Sentence Writing
Writing a sentence in kindergarten can be daunting. However, it doesn’t have to be! I introduce kindergarten students to writing simple sentences with these engaging activities early in the year and build upon it month after month!
We start the year off slowly with a very simple sentence structure. In August and September, I start with just one sentence for the students to manipulate. They read it over and over with a variety of pointers (which are a BIG deal and a great tool for young students). The first week of school we do this activity as a whole group. Simple! We take turns with the pointer. Students love building sentences! It is a great way to incorporate sight words, too. Then at the end of the week, I usually say, “Friends! We have had so much fun with this activity. What if we make this one of our literacy centers?” They always cheer, “YES!”
A few weeks later, I might say, “Hey friends, when you go to this station, let’s write our own sentences! I break out the recording sheets and say, “Let me show you how.” This is a whole group activity. Simple! However, the product is not always stellar. That’s okay! We have all year to perfect it.
In August and September, the words are hard to read. The illustrations need a bit of interpretation. In my opinion, that is just fine. If we wait for perfection… we will be waiting until January. Nope! We can practice sentence writing and get better NOW!
After a few weeks of this, I might nudge in while a student is working at this station and do a little teaching. I might show them how to make the sentence neater. I might show them how to make smart color choices or even add a color word. Or… even suggest that they use crayons instead of a pencil to color. Oy!
Then during our center debrief (a MUST), I might say, “Friends, do you know what I saw Joe doing at the pocket chart station (where I have the sentences)? I saw him working REALLY hard to make his letters clear. He even put a capital letter at the beginning of his sentence! You know what? That is what writers do and it makes my heart happy. Look at THIS!” Then I show it to them. Oh my MERCY! They ALL want to make my heart happy and we elevate the work. By slowly raising the bar… we raise the expectation.
Winter Sentence Writing
As Winter comes, we are getting better and better at writing sentences. I like to keep this center as new and exciting as possible, but stay predictable for student success. Each month, kindergarten friends practice writing complete sentences that are thematically linked to what we are learning or perhaps what we are focused on. New sentence starters and seasonal picture cards are added each month.
By this time of year, students are confidently writing sentences using this great activity during literacy centers. This is very exciting! They are so proud of their work… and of course, I love seeing how far they’ve come. Kindergarten teachers… you will love seeing the progress in your young learners, no only at this literacy center but also during independent writing time.
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Emergent Readers too!
I love having the option to add in an emergent reader, either to the center for students to complete if they get finished with their sentence writing, or to use some other time during our day for extra practice.
Kindergarten Sentence Writing: Phonics
There are times when I want students to focus on a specific phonics skill as much as possible. I will, occasionally, mix up our thematic sentence writing center and add in sentences to practice various phonics skills. Long and short vowels, CVC words, blends, digraphs… these early literacy skills can be practiced during a sentence center activity.
Between the thematic sentences and the sentence writing with a focus on phonics, I can easily keep this literacy center going all year. Your students will love these fun ways to practice their kindergarten writing. You can also use these picture and word cards with first grade students or any beginning writers!
Kindergarten Sentence Writing: Free Sample
I know! I like to try on clothes before I buy them too! Here is a little free sample that you can try on! I know it will be a perfect fit!
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