After looking at the new topic that the 4th graders at our school were going to be writing to next, we noticed how easy it would be for students to get hung up on a specific topic. Example topics of their favorite hobby like drawing, football, and playing fortnite were popping up on their frameworks, so we did a quick pick, list, choose lesson on how to broaden the topic so that you have more to write about. Watch the modeled lesson below! Notice the difference in using a topic like drawing versus arts and crafts.
The student has so much more to write about in their piece with the latter. Same with hunting and spending time in the outdoors. Are your students struggling to come up with a broad enough topic to use so that they can write and make lots of connections to their piece?