I am new to common core so I don't know if this is applicable or not, but this is a fun activity I'm going to do with my Introduction to Research class on Halloween. We have been working on research papers, specifically introductory and concluding paragraphs.
I'm going to have the students make Q-tip skeletons in groups. You can find the directions at the following link: http://www.artistshelpingchildren.org/kidscraftsactivitiesblog/2011/10/how-to-make-q-tip-skeletons/
I have checked several books, on the skeletal system, out of the library and will let the groups take one or two of those books. They need to take a few notes out of the books in order to write an introductory paragraph or a concluding paragraph. These will be attached to the posters as well. Here is the fun part, the paragraphs will be written breaking all the rules the students have learned about writing a good paragraph. The students should have fun coming up with all the ways they could break the rules. At the end of class the groups will stand up in front of the class and present their paragraphs as well as what rules they broke.