My Mama Had a Dancing Heart by Libba Moore Gray

March Theme:  Six Traits Mentor Texts

This month, my focus is books that can be used as mentor texts when teaching the Six Traits of Writing.

Recommended Grades: 3-5

Six Traits: Word Choice, Voice

My Mama Had A Dancing Heart (Orchard Paperbacks) is a sweet memoir about a girl and her mother and the fun days they shared through the seasons. Gray uses wonderful memorable language to convey feeling in this text: “When a warm spring rain would come pinging on the windowpane, we’d kick off our shoes and out into the rain we’d go.” Her choice of adjectives and verbs paints a vivid picture of the activities she and her mother would embark on.

Lesson Idea: After reading aloud the book, discuss how the author uses words to convey a feeling. Create a chart to show the langauge the author uses and the feelings the language conveys. Discuss how the word choice of the author makes a difference in the types of feelings conveyed.

This is one of my favorite books to use when modeling the Six Traits of Writing.  This was originally posted on May 24, 2009.

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