A question I am asked frequently, because of my use of picture books as mentor texts, is: “Are picture books really complex enough for my upper grade students?”
And my answer always is…
YES YES YES!
1. The story is usually done in 32 pages. When you refer to parts of the story in your lessons, most likely, students are going to remember. You can read a great picture book one day, and then use it for various lessons for days after that! Often times, you can teach SEVERAL standards with one picture book.
4. Please do not think I’m saying to never read a novel with your students again. Chapter books, extended texts, novels… whatever you want to call them… are still so important! Students have to build stamina and stick with a story that really builds- I totally agree. But students also need to see, hear, and understand so many different styles to become better readers and writers. What better way than to read mentor texts all year long?