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Informative Writing

Informative writing in the upper elementary grades should find writers thoroughly examining a topic. The use of facts, definitions, details, examples, and other information should support the topic. Information should be clearly separated into paragraphs, with a clear understanding of the use of topic sentences. Students should have gained better control of language, specifically words that link ideas and sections to one another.

(See Upper Elementary Narrative Writing for discussion of transition words.)

It is during the upper elementary years that students master the five-paragraph essay. Informative writing should contain an introduction with a strong thesis, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

Students of this age should be familiar with writing summaries. Developing skills in summarization is one way to improve student writing; this can be practiced across the curriculum. The ability to summarize information is essential prior to students beginning research reports.

By the end of elementary writing, the students should know how to gather information form multiple sources.  They should be aware how to rephrase information from sources in their own words, and to properly quote from sources.

Students should be introduced to the idea of a works cited sheet to support their writing, and be able to create such using basic publication information. Informative writing at the end of the elementary grades should include works cited pages.