Category Archive: mentor texts

Some Summer Writing Motivation

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The idea of creating anything at all that motivates children to continue learning and developing themselves as writers has kept me awake over the last few nights. And after a conversation with a… Continue reading

A Review of Kaia and the Bees

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Kaia and the Bees is a picture book you can use as a mentor text in narrative writing units. The book contains many craft moves, which makes it perfect for using in minilessons, writing conferences, and strategy lessons. Learn more about the book and take a peek inside of it.

Gathering Inspiration from Mentors

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Here’s an idea for using art to inspire students who are reluctant to use mentor texts. After all, creating something beautiful — inspired by someone else’s work — is something artists, and writers, often do.

On a Snow-Melting Day + Giveaway

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Prepare yourself for some exquisite words to get your writing week off to a wonderful start.

Focus Lessons: A Review and Giveaway!

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Reading Ralph Fletcher’s newest book, Focus Lessons, revealed memories of my childhood much the way photos can be revealed in a pan of solution. Slowly, vividly, and magically.

On Rethinking the Publishing of Information Writing

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When it comes to writing, a need for writers to have a clear vision is one of the big reasons we provide mentor texts in writing workshop.  Kids need to see not only a goal or end toward which they may aspire, but I would add that they need to be provided models to become inspired.  For we all know the effect inspiration can have on anything we are up to in life, right? It matters.  It helps. And certainly, writing is no exception. Read on to learn about why making a big deal of publishing informational writing is worth considering…

A Mentor Text to Inspire the Next Generation of Writers and Activists + a Book Giveaway

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I’ve found a hybrid mentor text that will inspire young writers and budding activists.
Leave a comment on this post for a chance to win a copy of Scot Ritchie’s new book, Join the No-Plastic Challenge.

Six New Narrative Picture Books for Your Mentor Text Basket

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Just as we reflect our teaching practices in the summertime, we can rethink some of the mentor texts we use and find new ones to share with students in minilessons, writing conferences, and strategy lessons.

Reimagine Notebook Entries Using a Mentor Text

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Using a mentor text can be a little like taking a course from a published writer- we can allow him or her to teach us how to be stronger writers. This can certainly happen with our drafts… but we can also do this work in our notebooks. Oftentimes, doing so can free young writers up to do larger-scale revision. Here’s one way I tried that…

Curating an Array of Mentor Texts

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If we’re committed to differentiating instruction, then it’s important to use a variety of mentor texts to meet students’ needs.

Immersion in Writing Workshop is Always Worth the Time

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The time investment you will spend in immersion may seem like a lot – especially if you’re providing students with four days to understand a genre. However, students will gain a greater understanding of the kind of writing you are asking them to produce if they have a clear vision for what the end product should look like.

Inclusive Mentor Texts: Teaching Writing with a Social Justice Lens

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We can have a positive impact on children’s reading lives when we attempt to make sure every child’s life is reflected in books AND that every child can understand the experiences of other people by reading books. By doing this, we not only positively impact our students, but we improve our society as a whole.

The Joys of Sharing Expository Nonfiction Mentor Texts with Students + a Giveaway

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Consider sharing these six books with your fact-loving students.
Leave a comment on this post for a chance to win all six books for your classroom library.

The Quickwrite Handbook, A Review +Giveaway

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Linda Rief has collected a treasure of mentor texts and created a guide to encourage you to find your own treasures! Start here, get inspired, and then see what you find when you start looking. It can be as small or big as you want when you begin and Linda gives us all the right tools to get started.

Continuing to think about our mentor texts

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While we have to ask ourselves questions about where books fit into our curriculum and how books support mindsets, now, more than ever, we should be asking how the books we use promote social justice and cultural awareness. These questions do not apply only to the books we offer students to read, but also the books we use to teach students to write. 

A Few Ways to Empower Writers Using Mentor Texts

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It could be said that what sets a writing workshop apart from other approaches to teaching writing is a focus on empowerment. Here are a few ways to empower writers when it comes to mentor texts…

NCTE 2018: Here We Come!

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Here’s a peek at the dates and times three members of our co-author team will be presenting at NCTE this weekend.

Four Mentor Texts to Nurture the Relationship Between a Writer and a Notebook: Notebooks as a Writers Tool

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Writers pause to notice the obvious and obscure moments in life. They preserve their memories in their notebooks by jotting words, tucking away photographs, ticket stubs, and other items that have left an… Continue reading

Getting to Know Your Writers

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The decisions I make from the classroom library to family connections are intentional and responsive to building a community of writers and learning about the students who make up this community.

Books to Begin the School Year

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Add six new picture books to your back-to-school read alouds and to your mentor text collection this fall.
After you read through this post, be sure to leave a comment about how you’d use these books in your classroom for a chance to win all six of them.