I have a problem slight obsession with books. I LOVE reading to my kiddos, and I love for my kiddos to WANT to get books from my class library to read. 2 years ago, I did a class library inventory and put them into an Excel spreadsheet with location (if it was on my shelf or their shelf- I still have some that are “mine”) and reading level. My intention was to add to it everytime I got new books, and I did for a while… but I haven’t kept up with it… and the thought of going through all my books again to figure out which ones aren’t in the spreadsheet makes me break out in hives. There are 977 listed on the spreadsheet, but I’ve gotten many more since then through book orders and book fairs and Amazon orders…
The books that are “mine” are the ones I use for lessons. I like to use books as mentor texts- books I can refer to for many lessons over a period of time. Sometimes, I read the book more than once, but usually, I read it once and then can just refer to a few pages later since the students are already familiar with it. This saves on time and keeps my lessons true “mini-lessons.”
I say all this because I’m linking up with Collaboration Cuties today to share how I use Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs in my classroom as a mentor text.
This is such a fun book and YES it can be used in upper grades!!
I use it for a week in Reading, Writing, and Grammar using the skills listed above. I have a unit in my TPT store you should check out if you are interested in using it, too!
One thing that is not included in the unit is how I use this book during grammar time (although there is an activity in the unit identifying parts of speech). I don’t teach grammar explicity very often. I use Jeff Anderson’s method of Mentor Sentences. (Have you ever seen him speak? Oh my gosh, he is hysterical and so full of information!!) I lift a sentence from my mentor text and I use it as an example of whatever skill I want them to focus on that week. The idea is that the students are seeing excellent sentences instead of sentences full of mistakes trying to figure out what’s wrong, which hopefully will transfer to their writing, as well. I HAVE seen my students imitate the authors in their own writing, which makes me so happy!
For this book, I chose a complex sentence (the book is full of them!) for the students to study.
“By the time they woke up in the morning, breakfast was coming down.”
On the first day with the sentence, the students try to figure out why I’ve chosen this sentence in particular. They might notice (among other things) that the sentence is in past tense, there are prepositional phrases, and hopefully, that it is a complex sentence!
We focus on the fact that it’s a complex sentence all week and they look for sentences in their own reading that has the same style, and during “grammar time,” we also work to notice parts of speech in the sentence (like adverbs: up and down; prepositions: by, in; verbs: woke, was coming; etc), we revise the sentence one day (they have to figure out how to make the sentence EVEN better- usually by adding adjectives or changing verbs), and they also try to imitate the sentence (in this case, they write their own complex sentence with the subordinating conjunction coming at the beginning of the sentence so that there is a comma separating the two clauses, and they also try to incorporate adverbs and prepositional phrases since the author did). At the end of the week, there is a quiz over what we worked on all week.
Click here or on either of the images below to download for free and try mentor sentences in your own class! The first page is so they can glue the sentence into their journals- they fill up that page over the course of the week with the work we do with that sentence.
I hope this is helpful to you! I’ve said I was going to share how I use mentor sentences in my room, and something else always comes up. I plan on doing another post this week (FOR REAL!) with a new mentor sentence showing actual student work so you can really see how it happens in my room! 🙂
If you want even more IN-DEPTH step-by-step help with implementing mentor sentences, check out my courses!
Today's $2 unit is another great book to use during those early weeks of school. Plus, bonus!!, the kids find this book HILARIOUS! www.ideasbyjivey.com/coupon/OTTERS/In this pack, you will receive:★a mentor sentence lesson for the book★an interactive notebook activity to review/teach adjectives★six reading ideas suggested with two activities provided: using text evidence and character traits★two writing ideas suggested with a writing prompt given★contextual vocabulary activities★ Activities are also provided as links to Google Slides for Digital Learning! ★Get it for just $2 here: www.ideasbyjivey.com/coupon/OTTERS/... See MoreSee Less
I shared my TPT story with you back in April... (if you missed it, you can check it out here: ckarchive.com/b/4zuvheh5z24kp)As promised, the next big celebration update has happened!! FIVE brand new units have been added to the Yearlong Mentor Text Curriculum Bundle: Volume 2 for Grades 3-5! www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Yearlong-Mentor-Text-Curriculum-Bundle-Volume-2-for-Grades-3-... (This is the large $99 bundle that covers the entire year with mentor sentences, interactive activities, reading and writing, and vocabulary.)If you own the large bundle, whether it's through TPT, my website shop, or through a course purchase, you will get these FIVE NEW UNITS (valued at $18.75) FOR FREE!! Just re-download your purchase!📔School's First Day of School by Adam Rex📘Our Table by Peter H. Reynolds📗The Widow's Broom by Chris Van Allsburg📙Sofia Valdez, Future Prez by Andrea Beaty📕Vulture Verses by Diane LangI am creating these units to strategically align with the large bundles- you'll find the books chosen in volume 2 cover language skills that didn't have lessons previously, and can also be paired nicely with books included in the original bundle. For example, use Vulture Verses with Animals Nobody Loves!Just as a reminder, YES! I plan on doing the same thing for all of the other yearlong volumes, so don't be upset if you own another volume, or another grade! (And remember, Volume 1 already has its bonuses added!!) I am going in order of when I released them, and as you can imagine, it takes some time to create so many brand new units. 😉If you DON'T OWN the Volume 2 Yearlong Bundle and still want these five amazing book units, you can get them now ON SALE for just $3 each for the next 48 hours! www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Ideas-By-Jivey/Order:Most-Recent#seller_details_tabsThank you again for all your support and feedback over the last decade! Here's to at least ten more!! ... See MoreSee Less