Feathers aren’t just for flying. . . In this scrapbook-like nonfiction picture book, Stewart introduces sixteen types of birds and compares their feathers to everyday objects teaching readers just how practical their feathers can be.
Mentor Text: Writer’s Craft: Before sharing Feathers: Not Just for Flying as a mentor text, read aloud the author’s note. In it, Stewart shares how she researches for her books and develops the concepts that make her books more engaging. Encourage students to use Feathers: Not Just for Flying as a model text when they are researching and writing their own informational texts. Consider both the scrap-book and the comparison models as possible mentors for students.
Buzz and Fly Guy learn about space in the next installment of this hybrid fiction and nonfiction. This time Buzz and his friend go to the space museum.
Mentor Text: Writer’s Workshop: Share Fly Guy Presents: Space using an ELMO or another projection device. Enlarge the pictures for all to see and discuss how the author takes elements of both fiction and nonfiction to write an interesting story. Use the book as a model text in writer’s workshop where students may be writing informational pieces; perhaps they want to write in the style of Tedd Arnold instead.
Portraits of a range of remarkable, bizarre, and often amusing creatures commonly found throughout North America with information related to the reader told from their point of view!
Nonfiction Poetry Writing
Writer’s Workshop Mentor Text/Point of View: Read aloud Curious Critters and discuss how the author took true information and told it through poems. Each critter shares his story from his point of view using onomatopoeia and other poetic elements. Actual photographs of the animals complete the text. Provide time for students to write nonfiction poems about a topic. Encourage them to take/use photographs to go along with their poetry.
The story of “one tiny turtle” and her life cycle in the ocean. The author uses a technique to tell a narrative story, but shares information in a non-traditional way.
Nonfiction Features/Sensory Details: Read aloud One Tiny Turtle and ask students what they notice about the features the author uses. Discuss the differences between the two text types. How does the author’s technique help us to understand the life cycle of Loggerhead turtles? This would also serve as a great mentor text for sensory details in writing. How does the author use sensory details to enhance the story? Could you borrow this technique from the author?
Snow in Vermont is as common as dirt. Why would anyone want to photograph it? But from the time he was a small boy, Wilson Bentley thinks of the icy crystals as small miracles, and he determines that one day his camera will capture for others their extraordinary beauty.
Embedded Nonfiction Mentor Text: Read aloud Snowflake Bentley and discuss how the author told a story, but embedded true information throughout. Use this book as a model for students as they write their own informational pieces. Perhaps students can write in narrative form with true information embedded throughout.