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The Dog of His Dreams!
When cousins Dennis and Mellie decide to get a dog, they consider carefully what breed would be best for each family. For example, Dennis wants a big dog, but Mellie wants tiny. He has no other pets, but she has other pets that a dog must get along with. They consider different dog personalities, family situations, and personal preferences. Dennis writes an opinion essay for his teacher, Mrs. Shirky. But will his essay convince his parents to get the dog of his dreams?
This story takes a popular subject--kids getting a pet--and adds dogs of all sizes and shapes: all writing lessons should be this much fun. In the end, it's cousins and the dogs that keep a reader turning the page. What kind of dog will Dennis choose? Will Mellie want the same kind of dog?
This story hits many notes:
A family story about cousins, Dennis and Mellie
Information on dog breeds
Responsible dog ownership
Mentor-text for teaching writing
Model opinion essay for elementary students
Models the writing process, especially the importance of pre-writing or planning before you write
Completes the writing process by showing the results of Dennis's essay
I WANT A DOG almost makes opinion essays look too easy. But it works on many other levels, as well. Younger kids will be excited to learn the differences between dogs and will laugh at the antics of the dogs. Elementary kids will rejoice in a story of cousins (and will write the best essays ever!). A universal dream - a great pet - becomes an engaging writing lesson.
See other books in THE READ AND WRITE series:
I Want a Cat: My Opinion Essay
My Crazy Dog: My Narrative Essay
My Dirty Dog: My Informative Essay (forthcoming)
WATCH DARCY PATTISON EXPLAIN HOW TO WRITE OPINION ESSAYS
This 20-minute video explains how to teach opinion essay writing using this book: mimshouse.com/writing-opinion-essays/
Ewa O'Neill (ewaoneill.com) live in England with her husband and twin sons. Published in nine languages, children's book author and writing teacher DARCY PATTISON has been published with Harcourt, Philomel/Penguin, Harpercollins, Arbordale, and Mims House. Her books received recognition for excellence with starred reviews in Kirkus, BCCB and PW. Twice her books have been honored as National Science Teacher's Association Outstanding Science Trade books. The Journey of Oliver K. Woodman (Harcourt) received an Irma Simonton Black and James H. Black Award for Excellence in Children's Literature Honor Book award, was named a Notable Book in Language Arts, and has been reprinted in a Houghton Mifflin textbook.