mentor texts

Mentor Texts as Springboards for Writing

I'm always on the hunt for books that capture a universal experience in a way that opens possibilities for writing in response (or in conversation). Mentor texts that invite writers to riff off their brilliance while creating something entirely new. April Pulley Sayre’s latest picture book, In Between, is exactly that kind of book (Beach Lane Books, 2023).

engagement · writing workshop

Engagement and the Writing Workshop

I had the opportunity to hear Cornelius Minor speak at the CCIRA Conference earlier in February, and I cannot stop thinking about it. He defined engagement in a way that is both conceptual and precise.  I may have stopped breathing as my brain short circuited in response.

Amping up Agency Blog Series · picture book · Read Aloud

Five Read Aloud Books for an Agency Study: Amping up Agency Blog Series

I’ve put together a text set of newer picture books to explore the concept of agency with kids. Imagine how it might look across a week to read these books aloud, co-creating an anchor chart with similarities between the actions of the main characters. What might we anticipate writers noticing? What connections might kids make to writing workshop? How might these characters serve as mentors as we collectively build our writing workshop, ensuring it is a place where each writer is encouraged and challenged to make decisions, to initiate the action they need to move their writing work forward?