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    I woke up in my room with the light of the sunrise in my eyes, so I quickly turned away from it. I tried going back to sleep, but I felt too alive. Then, I stumbled into the living room to make breakfast, but I accidentally knocked my thick coat down. I decided to let it stay there. After finishing breakfast, I watched the news. A public announcement came on the T.V. It stated “there was a rampage killer on the loose. He was nicknamed El Lupo.” Simultaneously, a gunshot could be heard outside. I ran to the window to see what was happening. The mailman was lying on the floor in a pool of blood, staining his bicycle and the red rose bush next to him.
    I quickly grabbed the old key resting by my cereal box, and used it to go to the basement. The lights flashed eerily while walking down the steep narrow stairs. All of a sudden, the lights went out and was back on, and then right in front of my eyes was a rose piercing the wall with a paper wrapped around it. I was frozen, but I had an urge to grab it. When I got hold of it, I unwrapped it and it was branded with the words “Boom, Boom” and with bloodstains all over the words. I was puzzled and it felt I was shot with information, and then suddenly, lights started spewing from the bottom of the basement. Then, a thud, crackle, and a kablooie! And, the whole basement was wrecked and in pieces.
    That was the last thing I saw before a pole was launched at my head and hung me up on the wall. Alas! I was one of El Lupo’s victims who saw the rose.

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(Teacher) Timothy lost his balance and then suddenly vanished down a manhole, landing directly at the bottom of the city’s despicable sewer. (Student) I jumped after him, and I too landed in the greasy sewers, the horrendous smell quickly crawling up my nose. (Teacher) I thought the nasty smell would stay there temporarily, but it was taking forever to go away. (Student) All of a sudden, I was briefly submerged in the discolored water. (Teacher) I don’t know how long I stayed, but it felt I could never get out of here. (Student) Sometimes, I would try to breathe even though I knew I shouldn’t. (Teacher) Suddenly, I heard a loud boom from somewhere; it almost sounded like the wail of a small child. Soon, I realized it was Timothy. (Student) When I went to take a breath of air, I shortly saw Timothy being terrorized by rats. (Teacher) A group of creepy rats were greedily nibbling on my friend’s toes and another group, happily crawling all over his head. (Student) I was usually terrified of rodents, but this moment, I had a strong urge to help Timothy. I grabbed the rat by the tail (and which will never happen again, not even yearly), and flung it away. (Teacher) I quietly fought my fear and acted like a hero because I didn’t want to scare my friend who was trembling like an earthquake. (Student) I was about to grab another rat, but before I could, it bit Timothy. My friend screamed so loud that I easily slipped back into the water. There was something there to cushion me; it was scaly and rough, and then all of a sudden, that thing turned back and showed me its bloody teeth. Then, it roared and roared again and whipped me outside of the water. The crocodile slid onto the floor and slapped the rats back into the water with its tail. Suddenly, I saw a stick, which I took it and poked in the beast’s eye; it hissed and grunted and then went back into the water. (Teacher) When Timothy saw me safely anchored near a small patch of land, he slowly started coming toward me. Yesterday, it was the happiest day in his life—it was his birthday—and today, he was fighting for his life. (Student) The irony is, I had bought him a stuffed crocodile as a birthday gift and now it was on the bottom of the sewer! (Teacher) With all his might, Timothy tried to swim in the rapidly accelerating water and just when he approached me, I saw a rope floating in the water. I grabbed it and threw the thick strand toward him. (Student) Timothy caught it, and then slowly came to me. He stretched his legs for a while, and then we both went back into the water and swam, trying to find a way out. After swimming for an hour, we found an iron ladder attached to a manhole cover. We started climbing up till we saw the blinding light and the fresh air we smell often daily. (Teacher) I smiled, and said hello to the sunshine and goodbye to the deadly sewers.


Instruction and learning objective:


This exercise was a part of “Adverb” lesson where students were asked to write a story along with the teacher (in private class) or their classmates (in group class). To make it challenging, they were instructed to use 25 adverbs from the below list—one or two adverbs in each sentence, without repeating any. Sometimes, children thrive well when put in a fun yet challenging learning environment. The “Adverb” lesson was created keeping this in mind, where students had to be spontaneous, find a clever way to incorporate those adverbs, and write with their teacher (and classmates). 


All my students tried their best, but Pranav was the only one who accomplished this mammoth task, and that too in just one hour of class time! Not only he incorporated all the adverbs (all the underlined words), he also delivered an action-packed, exciting story, along with a good title. The published story has only been lightly edited, so what we wrote in the class is the final version.


Writing prompt: I was walking home with my best friend when he or she vanished down a manhole. I jumped in to save my friend and discover that…


Adverb list: Now, Soon, Yesterday, Early, Again, Here, Somewhere, Outside, Bottom, Near, Quickly, Happily, Quietly, Easily, Greedily, Often, Daily, Yearly, Usually, Sometimes, Briefly, Forever, Long, Temporarily, and Shortly.

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I looked at the famished plants craving water. What also caught my attention was the enchanted sky dawdling to turn night once more. I made amendments with the devious sun not to burn me because that would be a catastrophe. Alas! the sky is no longer blue but black, and nothing but intimidating. However, the light shall rise once more. But never shall the same day occur again.

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I woke up in the morning so fast as if someone gave me a cue to do so. I was so vexed and overflowing with ire. I walked out to see the same rut of wee ivy on the wall  trying to be sly. I heard my mother shout my name. I knew it was breakfast. As soon as I came, I saw my little sister hiding because she’s a coy girl. She was coy due to the fact that she makes a lot of errs, as if she was born apt for it. After breakfast I continued my deep slumber.

Instruction and learning objective:

There was a twist in this month’s vocabulary class. Students were provided a list of 10 “three-letter” big words: apt, ire, wee, vex, err, coy, cue, sly, rut and ivy. After learning the meaning, they were asked to write a paragraph using all of these words. This lesson compelled students to step outside their comfort zone and incorporate advanced words, beyond their grade levels.

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