P5 / P6 Composition – taken from the Mages Primary 6 English book
This week we worked on the theme of A Good Deed.
Now most of my students would pick the 2nd picture and write about saving an abused/lost dog. Kids are drawn to animals!
Knowing this, I decided to plan the composition for them this time.
I wanted to show them :
1) How we could link up Pictures 1 & 3 together in a story
2) How we could move away from the ‘usual’ story content that most students love to write about
3) How to develop a central character (Mrs Tan) & how she changes over the course of the story
4) Synonyms for the word ‘grumpy’ when describing Mrs Tan
5) Different phrases that we can use to express gratitude aside from ‘Thank you”.
Below is the story plan.
A Good Deed Pictures 1 & 3
Introduction : Dialogue
- “Stop destroying my plants you naughty children!” shrieked Mrs Tan.
Describe Mrs Tan, your elderly, grumpy neighbour
- cantankerous, crabbed, cross, edgy, grouchy, grumbling, huffy, ill-tempered, irritable, liverish, peevish, petulant, querulous, ratty , sulky, sullen, surly, testy, tetchy
- she had many potted plants that were near the basketball court
- always screamed at us when the ball bounced near her plants
- disliked by all the children
- Walking home from school
- Mrs Tan was a few feet ahead of me
- Suddenly tripped over a large rock and fell
- Stood stock still a moment, contemplating walking away from her
- Mother always said a compassionate heart is the most important quality anyone can have
- Ran to help her up
- Whimpering in pain and her arm was twisted in an awkward angle
- Took her to the clinic and doctor said she had broken her arm
- Helped her home and could not wait to leave
- However, I saw her crying helplessly so I made her a cup of tea and helped her to wash the dishes in the sink
- Found some instant noodles in the cupboard and cooked it for her
- While she was eating, I cleaned up her home
- When I left, I told her that I would return the next day after school to check on her
- Told mother what had happened that evening
- Mother beamed at me and said that my kindness would always be remembered by Mrs Tan
- Every day after school I watered her plants and washed her dishes and tidied her house
- Mother prepared food for her daily
- Mrs Tan became a changed woman
- She smiled more often and told me stories about the time when she was a child in Singapore
- When she got better she would bake cookies for the children in the neighbourhood and we would help water her plants
- I learnt a valuable lesson from this incident. I will always remember what Mrs Tan had said to me when she was better. She had held my hand and thanked me for my good deed, saying that if the world had more people like me it would be a better place. I was happy to have helped Mrs Tan. The good deed was the reward itself.
Phrases to Describe Appreciation
1) What would I have done without you?
2) Just saying thank you will never repay your kindness
3) Words cannot express my feelings nor my thanks for your help
4) Your thoughtfulness will always be remembered
5) If the world had more people like you, it would be a better place
The composition is written by one of my P6 students, Gerald. While there were better ones in terms of accurate grammar, I loved the humour and added descriptions that he had incorporated in his story. (I have typed it out because the scan did not come out as clearly as I would have liked.) The composition was written in 50 mins.
“Stop destroying my plants you annoying little brats!” shrieked Mrs Tan. My friends and I quickly ran where she was not able to see us. Mrs. Tan was my old, cantankerous neighbour. She was disliked by all the children in the neighbourhood. She was the most ill-tempered, cross and crabby person you could ever meet. Mrs. Tan had many plotted plants near the basketball court and was always screaming her head off at us when the ball bounced near her plants.
“I wonder what mum is preparing for dinner? I hope its…” My thoughts were abruptly interrupted by an old woman glaring at me. Mrs. Tan started advancing towards me. Suddenly, she tripped over a large rock and landed with a ‘Crack’ sound on her arm. I stood still for a moment, contemplating walking away from her. Then a voice which was all too familiar in my mind said ,”A compassionate heart is the most important quality anyone can have.” Heaving a heavy sigh, I walked over to her and helped her up. Mrs. Tan was whimpering in pain and her arm was twisted in an awkward angle. Immediately I brought her to the nearby clinic for a check up. “She has a broken her arm and will take at least two months for it to heal,” said the doctor worriedly. Mrs. Tan had a cast on her arm after the visit to the clinic.
I brought her home and could not wait to leave! However, I felt pity as Mrs. Tan cried helplessly so I made her a soothing cup of barley tea and reluctantly helped her to wash the dishes in the sink. I found some instant noodles in the cupboard and cooked it for her. She ate them ravenously while I helped clean her house.
“I will be back tomorrow after school to check on you, okay?”I said while leaving the house. She nodded thankfully and continued enjoying her instant noodles.
I trudged home as slow as a snail due to the tiring amount of housework at Mrs. Tan’s house. When I finally arrived home, I noticed mom glaring at me. “Where have you been? I have been worried sick! It’s already 7.23pm!” mum questioned. I related what had happened that evening as mother beamed at me and said that my kindness would always be remembered by Mrs. Tan. Then, she cooked dinner for me and I gulped down the food whole.
The next day, I started off my Thursday with my usual cereal. Finally, school ended and I rushed off to Mrs. Tan’s house. Somehow, Mrs. Tan turned over a new leaf and became a changed woman. From that day, she smiled more and often and told me stories about the time when she was a child in Singapore in the 1950s. Everyday after school, I would water her plants and wash her dishes and tidy her house. When she got better, she baked delicious chocolate chip cookies for the children in the neighbourhood.
I learnt a valuable lesson from the incident. I will always remember what Mrs. Tan had said to me when she was better. She had held my hand and thanked me for my good deed that faithful day when she had fallen down. She said that if the world had more helpful people like me, it would be a better place. I was happy that I had helped Mrs. Tan. The reward was in the good deed itself.