Ways to Start a Story

One of my 4th graders asked me for ideas on how to start a story.  We had a great conversation and looked at some wonderful examples.  Here is what we ended up with:

Ways to Start a Story

  1. Traditional

Once upon a time there was…

  1. Dialogue (people talking)

“Mom! Help me! I can’t…” I shouted to my mom as I fell out of the tree.
———————-
“But you promised to take me to the movies today! You promised! You promised! You promised!” I started crying.

  1. Action (something is happening)

My brother slammed the door just as the rain started. This time he did not get caught in the rain. This time he did not get struck by the lightning.
———————-
I watched from behind the bookshelf as the thief snuck into the living room and opened the top drawer of the desk. He did not know I was there.

     4a.    Description (what does the setting look like? sound like?)

The spring flowers bloomed and the honeybees buzzed along the banks of the river. The sleepy town woke up to the sounds of the roaring river flowing down from the dark mountains. Something floated in the water, trapped by an old tree branch.

     4b.    Description (what does the character(s) look like?)

Jaime was only 4 feet, 2 inches tall but he was the best goalie the team had ever had. He could jump higher than kids who were 5 feet tall. But he never bragged about it. He did not have to.

 

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Lima Sky: Panza de Burro

Speaking with someone here in Lima, Peru I asked about the weather.  You see, my experience of Lima has generally been in the winter months (June, July, August).  During that time the sky is usually gray and the sun is rarely seen.  Now it is spring and the sky is still mostly gray.

When I asked about the summer months and the presence or absence of the sun I was told, “No, el cielo panza de burro se cambia en el verano.  En el verano hay sol y hace calor.”  That means, ‘No, the sky that looks like the belly of a burro changes in the summer.  In the summer there is sun and it is hot.”

I was so glad to hear that I will see more sun and I loved the description of the sky: panza de burro/ belly of a burro (also known as a donkey).