The following strategy can be used for helping students getting more in touch with their surroundings and with details.
This is a really fun activity for not only writing, but reading as well. The students will all take their "imaginary" camera with them and go outside. The teacher should model this at least once. Take the two pointer fingers and the two thumbs to form a "camera lens" with your hands. Now, take a picture of something big and general like a playground. Next, "zoom" the camera in to see close details of the pictures. In this example you could zoom into the slide. Now, describe every little detail that makes up the slide. What is the main idea? What are the details?
It is very important that the students verbalize and discuss their pictures as they are "snapping" their pictures.