Workshop Wednesday: Columbus Opinion Writing - Ideas By Jivey: For the Classroom

Workshop Wednesday: Columbus Opinion Writing

Time for another edition of Workshop Wednesday! Today, we are focusing on Opinion Writing. Please link up your posts with ideas, lessons, books, or anything else that goes with this topic! :)  (Please refrain from direct links to your store... you can always share your product and how you use it in your post, though!)

Today, I'm going to share with you how we integrate Social Studies into our writing in my classroom. As we have been learning about explorers, our big question for this week's writing piece is:

Is Christopher Columbus a hero or a villian?

We've read about Columbus in our Studies Weekly newspaper...
...and we read You Wouldn't Want to Sail With Christopher Columbus!...

...and we've done interactive notetaking with a passage about Columbus... (and you can get that freebie here!)

...and finally, we read Encounter, which is a historical fiction book about Columbus's landing from the point of view of a Taino boy.

Students get a different perspective of Columbus in this book- and although it's fiction, it is definitely based on historical truth. It is an AWESOME book that I could go on and on and on about for reading and language arts skills, too, but I'll stay on topic today. :-P

Since students had several sources and perspectives about Christopher Columbus, they should have an opinion formed of him. Check out these quick write opinion pieces! :) You can click on any of the pictures to blow them up and read them more easily. I think they are off to a great start!


  1. I loved this idea so much, I went to amazon and bought the kindle version of this book, went to my library and got a few books on Christopher Columbus and am doing it tomorrow!!! Can you tell me where the graphic organizer came from?

    1. The organizer was passed along to me only by copy, and there is no publisher name on it. Sorry! Enjoy the writing lesson though- my kids loved it!

  2. Haha! I especially loved, "You should have your own day in jail!" Your students' writing is so strong that it's obvious you're great at teaching it.

    Don't Let the Teacher Stay Up Late
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    1. Aw thank you! I wish ALL my students' writing was like this!!!! :-P But yes, there are quite a few that definitely take my mini-lessons and RUN with them!

  3. What a great activity. I think it is great that you give them so many resources with which to form their opinion. Love it - love the samples you shared as well. Have a great week!

  4. I love all the perspectives they were given about Columbus-such valuable information! They're definitely off to a great start! Awesome writing!
    Head Over Heels For Teaching

  5. What a great idea! I like your interactive notebook idea also. The kids look like they've really caught onto the opinion writing. :)

    The Balanced Classroom

  6. I enjoyed reading your students writing's! Too cute!

  7. I'm with the Christopher Columbus is a villain! What wonderful opinion pieces these are using text based evidence!! :) Love it!! I have that book now too that to Collaboration Cuties. :)
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  8. This is great! I don't officially start CCSS until next year, but I'm trying it out this year. Persuasive writing is going to our goal for first trimester. I'm planning to start it next week. These are great ideas! Oh - I'm with Christopher Columbus is a villain and many other things. Have you ever read the adult books about him. He was not a nice man.

    Third Grade Galore

  9. Awesome way of implementing opinion writing! You rock! I will put this in my plans for next year! There just doesn't seem to be enough time in the day to do EVERYTHING I find on blogs and pinterst! Thanks for sharing!
    Rockin Resources Blog


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