Mr. X – Story book writing

Writing storybooks is a great way to reinforce grammar and vocabulary. It also gives students confidence and pride in “producing” something visible and tangible to measure their English language learning experience.

There are several steps to making a storybook and I’ll use my own Mr. X’s incredible Day/Yesterday as an example. Get the ppt/video here for use with students.

1.  Tell the story with students. Play a video / use a storybook / use a ppt but pictures are essential! Go slow and exaggerate and use your voice/gestures to communicate vocabulary and content/context.

2.  Students re-tell the story. Note the vocabulary for the story on the board and students use this to make sentences to retell the story. Or, just show pictures and use them as a prompt to retell the story. See how I used Voicethread to retell the Mr. X story. But you can just take the words off the ppt and use a picture only ppt.

3. Writing. Students are now more comfortable with the story and vocabulary. Get them to write 6-10 sentences to outline the story. For each sentence , provide a prompt on the board for lower level students. Higher level students can add more information for that sentence number. The teacher monitors and helps correct/edit. I use this worksheet for Mr. X.

4. Bookmaking.  Give students some sheets of A4. They fold in half and staple to make the book. Or fold again and cut the folds to make a mini book (students usually like this smaller book more!). Students cut and paste their pictures into the book and also write their text from the worksheet. Color, make a title page, borders and personalize.

5. Present/Publish. Students can read their books to the class or in small groups. Sharing is a must! Make a library for your student produced books! 

You can make books about just vocabulary also. You can even use Tar Heel Reader – to get pictures and inspiration for alphabet and vocabulary books. I highly recommend it and if you want to make an electronic book, get a password code and impress your students!

Mr. X - Story book writing, 4.5 out of 5 based on 2 ratings
David is an author, professor of TESOL and teacher trainer with over 25 years of teaching experience. You can find him on ELT Buzz or LinkedIN ELT Professionals. Home page -