Daniel's Good Day

I've been trying to include making class books more often this year.  The kids LOVE reading them, and they're always more engaged with whatever writing concept I'm pairing it with because they're writing for an authentic purpose. Daniel's Good Day by Micha Archer is such a sweet story, and the pattern in the book made it a perfect model to create our own version.
Teach dialogue and make a class with Daniel's Good Day by Micha Archer. Create a dialogue anchor chart of the work writers do and then download the template to have students make their own class book.
This post contains affiliate links which means Amazon tosses me some change whenever someone makes a purchase through one of these links and allows me feed my book habit!

In the story, Daniel always hears the people in his neighborhood say, "Have a good day!" and this makes him wonder what a good day is.
Daniel walks to the park to meet his grandmother, and asks neighbors along the way what a good day means to them.

"When skies are clear so I can paint," she tells him.

"A please and a thank-you," says the bus driver.

"Wagging tails," the mail carrier says.

Dialogue makes up a significant amount of the story, so it was also a great introduction for noticing the work of reading and writing dialogue.  This year, I stopped talking about grammar rules and instead talk about "work writers do to help their readers understand the story." It's made a big difference in kids understanding and applying our learning.

Here's a quick run down of what we did:

•We discussed different simple things that happen that make it a good day, and the kids shared their ideas.

•I recorded a few of the examples on chart paper.

•We then talked about the extra things writers do to help their readers understand dialogue. I did the work on the examples, and then added the rule to the chart.

•Writers put marks around the words to help readers know when the talking starts and stops. Look how the marks curve towards the words. These are called quotation marks.

•Writers add a comma to show the readers the talking part is over but the sentence isn't finished yet.

•Writers add who was doing to the talking because it would be confusing if we didn't know who said what.
Not a work of art, but adding each piece of information as we talked about it was more impactful than having it all on a chart ahead of time. Plus, the kids really don't care what it looks like.

After that, it was time to get to work! The kids wrote their sentences and checked in with me. Afterwards, they moved on to illustrating their page.  I have kids volunteer to design the cover and add illustrations if there is a beginning page like in this class book.
Our book pages are SUPER basic.  (If you'd like your own, you can download Our Good Day here.)  I hole punch the pages, stick them in the folder, and glue a cover on.  The End.  I stopped binding them because there's always a student that checks out early, needs time to finish, goes to another class, something.  This makes it easy to get the book in kids' hands quickly but also add in any students' work that is completed later on.
If your students enjoy Daniel's Good Day, you'll want to add Daniel Finds a Poem by Micha Archer to your class library.  The kids clapped at the end, so you know that's a good book.  They've already requested to make a a class book inspired by Daniel Finds a Poem when we study poetry later on this year.