We have begun to explore ‘small moments’ writing during our literacy sessions. First, we read the ‘The Roller Coaster’ by Marla Frasee. Through this text, we began to think about the way authors write about ‘small moments’ in their life that are meaningful to them. We looked closely at the images, the feelings and actions expressed through them.

How did Marla Frazee write about a small moment? What did we notice?

The students explained:

  • she changed the way the words and sentences are written and drew lots of details in the picture
  • she added lots of details make the story more interesting
  • the pictures show how the roller coaster goes fast
  • the little girl changed her feelings during the story (scared and then happy), we know this because she used actions in the pictures

We wondered how we can use these different ‘craft moves’ in our own writing.

We thought about all those special ‘small moments’ we have had. Some were about the people in our lives, the places we go to frequently or the things we do all the time. Some first-time experiences and some were things that happened at the end. This led to the students creating their own list of small moments. 

Next, we chose 1 small moment to write about. They used a graphic organizer to include their thoughts, emotions, words, people, places, and things that are to do with the small moment. 

Then, the students began to put those ideas together to write about their own small moment. We know that good writers continue to improve their pieces of writing by refining their ideas and checking their writing.

The students were introduced to a Narrative Writing Checklist. After assessing a sample piece of writing, they used the checklist to self-assess.


This process encourages students to evaluate their own work, while identifying and setting goals for further improvement. 

Writing – Conceptual Understandings:

  • write narratives to develop real experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences
  • develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.
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