Darcy Pattison

I Want a Cat

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I Want a Cat: My Opinion EssayBy Darcy Pattison, Illustrated by Ewa O'Neill

Hurrah for Essays! All writing lessons should be this much fun.

When cousins Mellie and Dennis decide to get a cat, they consider carefully what breed would be best for each family. For example, Mellie wants a cat that pounces, but Dennis wants a lazy cat, like his lazy dog, Clark Kent. Mellie wants a lap cat, but Dennis just wants a warm body BESIDE him. They consider different cat personalities, family situations, and personal preferences.

Mellie writes an opinion essay for her teacher, Mr. Eagle. But will her essay convince her parents to get the cat of her dreams?

This story takes a popular subject—kids getting a pet—and adds cats of all sizes and shapes: all writing lessons should be this much fun. In the end, it's the cousins and the cats that keep a reader turning the page. What kind of cat will Mellie choose? Will Dennis want the same kind of cat?

This story hits many notes:

A family story about cousins, Dennis and MellieScientific information on cat breedsResponsible cat ownershipMentor-text for teaching writingModel opinion essay for elementary studentsModels the writing process, especially the importance of pre-writing or planning before you writeCompletes the writing process by showing the results of Dennis's essay
I WANT A CAT almost makes opinion essays look too easy.
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