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Use Mentor Texts to Kick Off a New Unit

September 05, 2012

Use Mentor Texts to Kick Off a New Unit

When Kristina Smekens shares these ideas with teachers, the common question is How do I know what book to read? So here’s a list of her favorite mentor texts aligned with the appropriate genres (e.g., expository, letter writing, narrative, persuasive/opinion, and poetry). NOTE: Page 3 of this download includes titles suggested for the developmental stages of writing that primary teachers target (drawing, labeling, listing). Using a mentor text provides students with a framework for understanding a new genre. When we read aloud an excerpt of a longer book or an entire picture book that exemplifies a specific genre, students have a chance to become comfortable with the structure. We can dissect a new genre, highlighting its form, facets, and purposes. A short picture book provides students a foundation for understanding what a new genre includes. This is the notion of mentor text. Using a text to mentor or teach students something about writing.

Smekens Mentor Texts

If you need to build your mentor-text library, visit The Literacy Store today to find many of the books from the list and more.

Books for Children
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