Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Tuesday Teaching Tip - Scholastic and Mentor Texts

You've heard me say it time and time again, but here I go again…

I love teaching writing!

One strategy I use most often is teaching through mentor texts. 

Children learn well by means of example. Whether it's teaching behavior, proper speech, problem solving, or writing students understand much better when they can see and year an example of what us expected. Mentor texts provide that good example for students in developing their writing, but in order to effectively use those mentor texts, you should choose strong and clear examples. It also helps to zone in on key areas of those texts and dissect the texts (in detail). 

Sometimes I realize that certain books lend themselves well to teaching different writing craft in the midst of reading to my class. That's why I sometimes put a sticky note inside the cover and list what kind of craft the book would be good for and even make note of what page provides strong examples. 

Although these sticky notes serve as a good reminder for me, it's not always the most convenient way of finding the mentor text I want to use for my lessons. It's a good thing that websites like www.scholastic.com have such great resources for teachers. One of those resources is a list of mentor texts!  You can find that here

I encourage you to take some time to explore the Scholastic website in the teacher resource section.

They've got some really useful stuff in there. You just need to know where to find it (and then remember that it's there)!  I found that bookmarking pages in my web browser helped. I'm queen of folders and sub folders. I have things bookmarked in sub folders like 

     --> Language Arts
                --> Graphic Organizers

Makes it so much easier to go back and find!

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