We are full swing into our Colonial unit and I just had to share the latest response to literature writing project the kids finished. I am in love! Now, I actually shared the version we did last year with you here. But I made some changes, so I figured it needed a new post. We started by reading the books Sarah Morton's Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl and Samuel Eaton's Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Boy . My fabulous teammate Kristi has an entire class set of the books, so it made that part very easy. When we finished, the students made a flow map of each of the children's day. I asked them to really think about the chores and tasks, making note of each. I then gave each student a non-fiction sheet with information about what a typical child living in the pilgrim plantation would have experienced. While it mirrored what the two reading books said, there was far more information, so the students weren't boxed in to only those activities mentioned in the books. You can get that sheet here. After reading the non-fiction and the realistic fiction, the students set off to write their own version of the "Day" books. Using the information gathered, they wrote 5 paragraphs: an introduction in the style of the books, a morning, a midday, an evening, and then a conclusion/wrap up paragraph in the style of the books. The kids really got into this and had a great time creating their essays. Since we are still working on varying our sentences, I did have them go back during the revision stages and change their simple sentences (of which there were many) to complex sentences, as well as add in some appositives. Then, for the final draft, the students created a "photo-journal" in the style of the reading books. This year, I had them draw the pictures directly into the book, with the story surrounding it...and it made a world of difference. The style of the journals so much more closely matched the style of the reading books. The kids got so into portraying their written words in the pictures. And I can't stop looking at them! They are just so fabulous. Have you ever taken a project that you did previously and tweaked it, with fabulous results? Tell me about it!