Teaching Quotation Marks and Dialogue
By Mary Montero
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We’ve been busy working on narratives in writing (post about that coming soon!), so it seemed like the perfect time to also throw in some instruction on using dialogue in writing and rules for using quotation marks. We didn’t have much time to practice, and the vast majority of the practice we did was done while we were writing our narratives, but I did want to share a few activities we used along the way!
First, we made an anchor chart together discussing ways to use dialogue so that they could change it up a bit. Then, we made an anchor chart about the basic rules for using quotation marks. After this, I had them look through a page in their current novel and pick out each of the dialogue rules we had discussed.
Now, this was one of those activities I thought of mid-lesson that turned out to be perfect. We have a class set of 10 iPads, so I had the students get into groups of 3 and record themselves having a brief 15-20 second conversation with each other (topic was their choice, but if I had planned ahead, I might have given them topics). Then, they had to transcribe their little conversations into a dialogue. They thought it was the coolest thing ever, and it was a super quick but super effective way to work on their types of dialogue and quotation mark rules!
The last activity we did included a set of quotation mark task cards! They are multiple choice task cards, so they can be used as a quick Scoot activity. However, I wanted them to take the task a bit further and keep on practicing their skills. Each partner group got a task card. They selected which one was punctuated correctly. Then, they had to come up with a line of dialogue that could go BEFORE and a line of dialogue that could come AFTER the sentence on the card. This was GREAT practice because they had to correctly punctuate three separate sentences or sections of dialogue and be creative at the same time. These were super fun to read and grade, too!
You can find the Quotation Mark Task Cards HERE!
While they worked on these activities, I had them use a quick little checklist to make sure they were following dialogue rules. You can download the list HERE.
Do you have any fun dialogue activities to share? I’d love to hear about them!
I’m so glad you are here. I’m a current gifted and talented teacher in a small town in Colorado, and I’ve been in education since 2009. My passion (other than my family and cookies) is for making teachers’ lives easier and classrooms more engaging.