Author Spotlight Series · authors · non-narrative writing · nonfiction · organization · research

Crafting Nonfiction: Conducting Research and Organizing Information

Melissa Stewart, award-winning author of more than 150 nonfiction books for children, steps into our Author's Spotlight today. In her post, she shares about the chunk and check process, which will help your students conduct research.

nonfiction

Putting Into Practice What I Learned about Authentic Information Writing From Ralph Fletcher

The Monday morning after Ralph Fletcher’s presentation on Authentic Information Writing at Vassar College, I gathered my sixth graders at our reading area and shared what I had heard and learned....

biography · mentor texts · nonfiction · picture book · poetry · Read Aloud · social justice · solar system

Black History Month & Beyond – My #NF10for10 + 10 Book Giveaways

Today is the annual Nonfiction Picture Book 10 for 10, hosted by Cathy Mere from Reflect and Refine, Mandy Robek of Enjoy and Embrace Learning, and Julie Balen of Write at the Edge. This is my third year participating in this event, which provides me with a chance to expand my nonfiction TBR list.  Last… Continue reading Black History Month & Beyond – My #NF10for10 + 10 Book Giveaways

feature articles · nonfiction · writing workshop

Charts and mini charts to anchor writing moves

Last Tuesday, Clare wrote a wonderful slice of life post about what everyday learning in a classroom really looks like and feels like, aptly entitled: Learning is Managed Chaos. These lines resonated with me: "We need to remember, however, that young learners can only appear independent in an environment that is carefully and thoughtfully managed… Continue reading Charts and mini charts to anchor writing moves

graphic organizer · informational writing · modeling · nonfiction · plan · primary grades

How Do First Graders Choose Narrow Topics?

We will be starting a unit on informational writing to wrap up the school year. I wanted to demonstrate a different way of finding a topic, a narrow topic. I find that young writers can often think big, making it hard to get to specific details. As I was thinking about this idea, of narrowing… Continue reading How Do First Graders Choose Narrow Topics?

nonfiction · writing about reading

Nonfiction Book Clubs: A Snippet of an IRA Workshop

Today's post is based on a workshop presented at the International Reading Association conference titled: Thinking, Talking, and Writing about Nonfiction Reading. Nonfiction Book Clubs provide the perfect opportunity for students to solidify all they are learning and to get better at writing about their reading.

nonfiction · writing

Laying a strong foundation for writing nonfiction through mentor texts

We are moving from our researching phase  into our first draft phase in writing workshop - and my sixth graders are beginning to experience the inevitable struggle of transforming their notes  into interesting, well-written feature articles.  “Inevitable” I say, because I go through this every year, at exactly this same time.  Turning research into writing… Continue reading Laying a strong foundation for writing nonfiction through mentor texts

non-narrative writing · nonfiction · writing

Giving Students Choice in Note Taking

Tomorrow marks the last of our research days in writing workshop.  When we return to school next week, my sixth graders will begin the process of sifting through their research and drafting their feature articles.  As I helped my students gather their notes together and put them away in their writing folders, I could not… Continue reading Giving Students Choice in Note Taking

independent writing projects · informational writing · mentor texts · non-narrative writing · nonfiction

Inspiring Independent Writing Project Mentor Text (Part 3 of 5)

If you're planning to launch independent writing projects in your class during the final weeks of school, then you'll most likely have several students who might want to write a book about a topic of expertise.  Therefore, it might be nice to have a few new mentor texts on hand that you didn't use when… Continue reading Inspiring Independent Writing Project Mentor Text (Part 3 of 5)

informational writing · mentor texts · non-narrative writing · nonfiction · Read Aloud · science

Informational Writing that Dazzles + a Giveaway

A couple months back I promised to be more intentional about finding nonfiction picture books to recommend as mentor texts for writing workshop.  I've been looking at a lot of informational texts in that time and found a few books by the same author and illustrator team that have dazzled me. A Rock Is Lively,… Continue reading Informational Writing that Dazzles + a Giveaway

giveaway · mentor texts · nonfiction

Nonfiction Mentor Text + a Giveaway

I've been thinking a lot about the balance of nonfiction and fiction texts in the classroom lately.  Starting today, I'm making an effort to share more nonfiction picture books you can use as mentor texts in writing workshop.  While I haven't taken stock of how many fiction picture books I've recommended as mentor texts here… Continue reading Nonfiction Mentor Text + a Giveaway