One Little Bag: An Amazing Journey by Henry Cole

Recommended Grades: 2-5

From a tall tree growing in the forest to the checkout counter at the grocery store, one little bag finds its way into the hands of a young boy on the eve of his first day of school.  And so begins an incredible journey. 

Lesson Idea: 

Mentor Text: Using Pictures to tell a Story:  One Little Bag (April 7, 2020, Scholastic) is a beautiful, wordless picture book.  Share the story with students and discuss the sequence of events as shown through pictures.  This incredible story transports the reader through three generations of one family and the much-loved bag they reused again and again. Ask students to put words to the pictures and write a story based on the pictures.

Just in time for Earth Day, One Little Bag includes a full page author’s note about Henry Cole’s own experience celebrating his first Earth Day and reusing a brown paper bag over 700 times.

Disclosure: I received this book free from Scholastic in exchange for a review.  

©2020 by Dawn Little for Picture This! Teaching with Picture Books. All Amazon links are affiliate links and may result in my receiving a small commission. This is at no additional cost to you.

Truth or Lie Series by Erica Perl

Recommended Grades: 2-4

Touted as 75% Truth + 25% Lies = 100% FUN! This new series makes the game “2 Truths and a Lie” educational!

Lesson Idea: 

Mentor Text: Determine Importance:  On one page in this early reader science series, Erica Perl provides readers with four statements about a topic.  Readers are asked to determine which one of the four statements is a lie.  The next page reveals the answer and provides detailed information about the true statements.  This series is a great mentor for students to determine importance in a text.  After reading texts about a different topic, students could use these texts as a model in order to write their own “Truth or Lie” book to demonstrate their understanding.

©2019 by Dawn Little for Picture This! Teaching with Picture Books. All Amazon links are affiliate links and may result in my receiving a small commission. This is at no additional cost to you.

Snow Sisters! Two Sisters, One Snowy Day by Kerri Kokias

Recommended Grades: 2-5

Just like snowflakes, no two sisters are alike.  The heroines enjoy a snow day in their own unique ways independently, but then reunite for a surprise! 

Lesson Idea: 

Mentor Text; Six Traits of Writing – Word Choice:  The use of clear, succinct language, coupled with beautiful illustrations makes Snow Sisters! an excellent model for teaching word choice. Read through the story and ask students what they notice about the use of language and the organization of the text.  How do the pictures enhance the minimal text?

©2018 by Dawn Little for Picture This! Teaching with Picture Books. All Amazon links are affiliate links and may result in my receiving a small commission. This is at no additional cost to you.

The Word Collector by Peter H. Reynolds

Recommended Grades: K-5

Some people collect coins, some collect stamps, but Jerome collects words.  Words that transform, connect, and empower.  This is a celebration of finding your own words and the impact you can have when you share them with the world.

Lesson Idea: 

Mentor Text; Six Traits of Writing – Word Choice:  Peter H. Reynolds books are always whimsical and inviting to young readers.  The Word Collector is no different.  Read aloud this book to provide students with an opportunity to realize that they too, can collect words in their writer’s notebooks.  And use the story to empower them to share those collected words with the world through their writing.

©2018 by Dawn Little for Picture This! Teaching with Picture Books. All Amazon links are affiliate links and may result in my receiving a small commission. This is at no additional cost to you.

Feathers: Not Just for Flying by Melissa Stewart

Feathers: Not Just for Flying is a Maryland Black Eyed Susan Award nominee for 2016.

Recommended Grades:   3-5

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. 

Lesson Idea:

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.

©2016 by Dawn Little for Picture This! Teaching with Picture Books. All Amazon links are affiliate links and may result in my receiving a small commission. This is at no additional cost to you.