Skip to contentContribute to ReadWriteThink / RSS / FAQs / Site Demonstrations / Contact Us / About Us



Contribute to ReadWriteThink

ReadWriteThink couldn't publish all of this great content without literacy experts to write and review for us. If you've got lessons plans, videos, activities, or other ideas you'd like to contribute, we'd love to hear from you.



Professional Development

Find the latest in professional publications, learn new techniques and strategies, and find out how you can connect with other literacy professionals.



Did You Know?

Your students can save their work with Student Interactives.

More more

HomeClassroom ResourcesLesson Plans

Lesson Plan

Persuasive Writing: What Can Writing in Family Message Journals Do for Students?

E-mail / Share / Print This Page / Print All Materials (Note: Handouts must be printed separately)


Persuasive Writing: What Can Writing in Family Message Journals Do for Students?

Grades K – 2
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Three 30-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Julie Wollman, Ph.D.

Julie Wollman, Ph.D.

Worcester, Massachusetts


National Council of Teachers of English


Materials and Technology

Student Interactives





  • A booklet or notebook to be used as a journal. Lined paper with an unlined block at the top (for illustrations) works well in the beginning.

  • Teachers seeking assistance with getting Family Message Journals started should consult the ReadWriteThink lesson Launching Family Message Journals.

  • Back-up people to reply if a child's family members don't. (The letter and pressure from children make this a rare occurrence but there are always one or two families who cannot reply regularly. In this case, a student teacher in the school, a special-subject teacher, the principal, or librarian are good options.)

back to top



Persuasion Map

Grades   3 – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Persuasion Map

The Persuasion Map is an interactive graphic organizer that enables students to map out their arguments for a persuasive essay or debate.


back to top



Family Letter

back to top



  • Choose the activities or experiences about which children will write their three messages, each with a different function. These could grow from your curriculum and can relate to any school activity or experience, such as a book read aloud, a science inquiry, a social studies lesson, a school assembly, a field trip, a celebration, making new friends, an assigned homework project, or any other topic drawing on school experiences. One message could focus on a lesson encouraging certain behaviors by families (e.g., wearing seatbelts, washing hands, or recycling). The second message could focus on children getting something they want related to a school activity (e.g., a study of common pets or an assembly advertising the school play). The third message could focus on getting help with solving a problem related to a topic of study (e.g., finding information about owls or solving problems with friends).

  • Prepare and photocopy the Family Letter if it has not been used in an earlier lesson. Have it translated into families' home languages as necessary.

  • Test the Persuasion Map on your computers to familiarize yourself with the tool and ensure that you have the Flash plug-in installed. You can download the plug-in from the technical support page.

back to top