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A Writer's Quest for Details

Sensory Details
What can you see? What would you hear, smell, feel?

In this space, encourage students to write descriptive phrases using sensory details after studying specific photos. What can you see?
What would you hear? Smell? Feel?


  • Deep green, tall fir trees
  • Patches of sunlight and shade
  • Clusters of monarchs covering tree trunks and hanging from branches
  • Forested mountain peaks

Collect phrases that use words that begin with the same letter.

In this space, have students write descriptive phrases using words that begin with the same letter.


  • Butterfly-filled branches bow under the weight of wings
  • Millions and millions of motionless monarchs
  • Closed-wing clusters covering tall, towering tree trunks
  • Resting in roosts
  • Flurry of flight

If a ____ could talk....

In this space, have students imagine what a monarch or oyamel tree would say...


  • I am an oyamel tree holding millions of monarchs. I can fill their weight on my branches.
  • My wings are still now, resting after their long flight and preparing for their final journey north.

Similies and Metaphors
Compare...Think: reminds me of:

In this space, invite students to make connections using similes and metaphors. (comparisons)


  • The monarch-filled tree trunks look like...
  • From above, the forest is like..
  • Monarchs huddle together like...
  • Canopy of trees is like a blanket... or an umbrella…
  • Intergenerational relay race in the Spring
  • A blanket of boughs protects the monarchs from cold winds.
  • Tall trees dressed in their winterwear of wings.