The “HOW TO” Unit

The beginning of my “how to” writing unit this year started with a bang! The unit I have created in order to teach sequential instruction writing to first grade has been so much FUN!

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The unit starts off with a self made book called “How To Make Scarecrow Crunch”. I read the book out load for the students to hear. Then I ask them if they would like to make Scarecrow Crunch. Of course they respond with “YES!”. So I quietly grab my bag of goodies and begin to read it again. Only this time I start to take out the ingredients listed in the story. The students become so excited that they can’t believe they are still in a Language Arts lesson.

Once I get everything out, I ask them if I have everything I need. I proceed to read the book and make Scarecrow Crunch. Once I am done, the book says to share it with friends, so I dish out the snack and everyone is so happy. The engagement rate in my classroom during this lesson is 100%.

When students are done eating their snack I ask them if they would like to write their own books like this one that teach people how to do something. The students become excited and let me know that they would like to write books like “How To Make Scarecrow Crunch”.

The first writing assignment the unit starts with is “How To Make A Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich”. Making a PB&J has a lot of steps! We take notes about what types of things we will need, we then draw pictures about what you do first, next, then, and last. After that, the students get to write their paper. I turn the papers into a class book.


The most exciting part about the whole thing, is that I read their papers and do exactly what they say!



This is one of the note pages we work on as a class. We discuss the steps and we illustrate them.


After the PB&J writing, we did “How to Carve a Pumpkin”. These papers turned out adorable. I am starting to see my students really grasping the concept of writing sequential instructions!








If you love what your are seeing and you want to do this in your class as well, head over to my TpT store and get the whole unit!

In the comments share with me what you did in your class. Did you do anything different? Did your kids respond to the unit well? Let me know 🙂