Literacy 7-12

Systems Change
Literacy 7-12 > Strategies > Sentence Frames

Sentence Frames


Sentence frames or stems provide language support for students' writing and participation in academic discussions. As a scaffold for students to start and structure an explanation, sentence frames help all students develop more fluent Composition and, in particular, allow students with varying English proficiency to use more complex Syntax and academic Vocabulary.

Use It in the Classroom

Watch how this teacher uses sentence frames and graphic organizers to support English Learners during a rich content class activity. By having these scaffolds, students can share their thinking and ask questions while feeling supported by their peers and teacher.

  • Teachers can incorporate and model sentence frames both orally and in writing. Students can use sentence frames like "According to the text..." or "A reason why __ is true is because of __ " to organize and convey their argument with evidence. In addition to graphic organizers or templates for discipline-specific writing, these supports can also prompt students to think more deeply and elaborate their written answers or discussions.
  • Design It into Your Product

    Videos are chosen as examples of strategies in action. These choices are not endorsements of the products or evidence of use of research to develop the feature.

    Starting at 1:38, learn how Word Raider incorporates sentence frames to support students in using new academic Vocabulary.

  • Products can provide sentence frames for different genres of writing (e.g., compare and contrast: "__ is similar to _____ because...") as options for students to use when they are brainstorming, explaining their answers, or stuck.
  • Factors Supported by this Strategy