inquiry · mentor texts · touchstone texts · universal theme

A Deep Dive Into One Spectacular Mentor Text

In this post, I’ll describe the ways I would use Rabbit and the Motorbike as a mentor text for instruction with writers in upper elementary grades through middle school. This is an example of the thinking work I do in advance of sharing a mentor text with students, anticipating what students might notice and planning for the questioning I will do to help them name those craft moves. My goal is always to get kids to the HOW, because that is the level of understanding they need to be able to try strategies out in their own writing.

mentor texts · universal theme

Talking Writing with Tatyana Feeney

Small Bunny's Blue Blanket is one of my favorite new picture books, which I blogged about last week.  The main character is adorable.  He acts just like a little kid, but he's a rabbit.  Second, it's a versatile mentor text.  Third, the story has universal appeal for adults and children. Tatyana Feeney, author and illustrator… Continue reading Talking Writing with Tatyana Feeney

slice of life · universal theme · writers

Writers Don’t Retire

Tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick. Andy Rooney made his final (regular) appearance on "60 Minutes" tonight.  It was one of many times I tuned-in to this icon over the past 25 years.  (Yes, 25 years.  Whether I liked it or not, "60 Minutes" was usually on our family's downstairs TV while I… Continue reading Writers Don’t Retire

mentor texts · universal theme

Universal Themes & Portraying the Realities of Life

When I first read Norah Dooley's Everybody Cooks Rice, I encountered something larger than a neighborhood making some sort of rice for dinner. Rather, I found people from different ethnicities who were working hard to put dinner on the table at the end of the day. Sounds like a typical American thing to do, right?… Continue reading Universal Themes & Portraying the Realities of Life