Sunday, March 30, 2014

Favorite Nonfiction Books

 I always try to read a balance of both fiction and nonfiction books to my students.  As a class, we have many conversations about the similarities and differences in these kinds of texts.  Because we are learning about the features of fiction and nonfiction, I find when students begin writing in this genre it becomes easier. 

This post will share with you some of my favorite books to use when teaching nonfiction.  

The first books are animal books by Kate Riggs.  Right away, I fell in love with her bold, big, photographs and layout. Students can easily “picture walk” these stories and gather lots of information.
When my class looks closely at these books with a writer’s eye, this is what we noticed.

·      Kate always begins and ends her books saying Hello and Goodbye.
·      She writes simple sentences on each page.
·      She often begins sentences with the name of the animal.
·      She puts important words in bold colors
·      She always has an animal label/diagram at the back of the book. 

Cathryn Sill writes an amazing animal series called THE ABOUT Series 

For kindergarten, I want my students to hear books that they can envision themselves making and, this series is perfect for that.  The ABOUT series is written with just the right amount of text.  I can see kids thinking, “Hey I can write a book called “ABOUT DOGS “.

The left page has a simple sentence with lots of white space and, the right side has water colored illustrations of an animal. The flow of the information is perfect. When looking closely at the lay out, students can quickly see that Cathryn begins by telling us where the animal lives and what the animal looks like. Cathryn Sills words flow beautifully from page to page.
I love that my students can return to her books again and again and learn something new. The back of the book has an afterward that gives facts and information about each animal featured in the book.   

Happy Reading and Learning!

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