Using pictures to teach the 5 W's

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SWBAT participate in a class discussion identifying and writing the 5 W's in a picture.

Big Idea

We will write questions about the picture details.

Warm Up

10 minutes

Today I will be engaging my students in a discussion where we will identify the 5 w's of a an event, and write the questions to orally read to the class.  It is important for my students to be able to identify the 5 W's of an event or story.  I decided today we would work on my students thinking about what the questions could be and not just me asking the questions and them answering them.  In the upper grades my students will have to be able to ask themselves the questions and then find the answers in the text.  I will prompt them into making up the questions.

"Today we are going to work on the 5 W's.  We will sing our song and then I am going to try and trick you.  So, pay attention to the video and remember all the 5 W's."

I gather my students on the carpet for Whole group Reading Block.  I show the video about the 5 w's of a story or event.  This video has been a great tool for teaching my students the 5 W's.  After a few viewings, they can sign the song with out the video.  


After watching the video I have my students sing the song by themselves as I write a list of the W's.

"Tell me the 5 W's and I will write them on the board.  Great!  You all remember what they are."

Writing Activity

10 minutes

I show my students the picture of a family on a picnic.  I display it on my smart board so everyone can see it.  

"Today I want to see if I can trick you.  I want you to look at this picture and we will answer the 5 w's of this event.  Can you turn to your partners and tell your partner the 5 W's?"

I have my students tell their partners the 5 W's.  Then I ask them to ask a question about each W.

"Please ask your partner a question about the picture that begins with WHO.  I will choose a friend to tell me the question their partner said."

I choose a student to tell me a question that begins with WHO and I write it on the board.  

"Now turn to your partner and ask your partner a WHAT question about the picture."

I ask a student to tell me a question that begins with What and I write it on the board.  I continue this process until all questions have been asked. We chorally read all the questions.

"Let's use this writing paper for our questions.  I want to see if you understand what the 5 W's mean."

I model the  writing under the document camera.  We refer to the questions on the board.  

5 W's question writing page

It is important for me to model the writing process several times so my ELL students understand what is expected of them.  I write it on the board, they say it to their partner, I say it, we chorally read it and then I model it under the document camera using the same writing paper as they will be using.  

"You are now to write the questions all by yourself.  I will erase the board and see if you can look at the picture and write your 5 W questions.  I will come around and help you."

Wrap Up

10 minutes

When all my students are finished with their writing we gather again on the carpet for their oral presentation.  I love this part of the lesson.  I love their efforts, progress and willingness to participate.  My students are a little shy and feel more confident when reading in front of the class with a group of their peers.  I try to change up the groups, many of them will help each other with word pronunciation.  This also ends up being a great community builder.  Each student is given the opportunity to read their questions.  We cheer and applaud their work.