Yearlong Mentor Text Curriculum Bundle: JUST THE BASICS for Grades 3-5


Original price was: $141.00.Current price is: $99.00.

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What is in this GIANT bundle?
All 40 Mentor Sentence Lessons
All 40 Interactive Activities
MODIFICATIONS for Revision and Imitation Days
All 40 Weeks of Vivid Vocabulary
and Better Than Basal: 100+ Reading Activities & 40 Writing Prompts

Maximize your teaching time by using the same book for as many skills as possible with this yearlong bundle.

★ ALL activities are also provided as links to Google Slides for Digital Learning! ★

★ Mentor Texts List:
Do Unto Otters by Laurie Keller
Mr. Peabody’s Apples by Madonna
The Adventures of Spider: How Spider Got a Thin Waist by Joyce Cooper Arkhurst
The Keeping Quilt by Patricia Polacco
My Rotten Redheaded Older Brother by Patricia Polacco
Dear Juno by Soyung Pak
Fireboat by Maira Kalman
Saturdays and Teacakes by Lester Laminack
Come On, Rain! by Karen Hesse
When Lightning Comes in a Jar by Patricia Polacco
Roller Coaster by Marla Frazee
Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner
Our Tree Named Steve by Alan Zweibel
Martin’s Big Words by Doreen Rappaport
Titanicat by Marty Crisp
Cherries and Cherry Pits by Vera B. Williams
In My Momma’s Kitchen by Jerdine Nolen
Hey Little Ant! by Phillip M. Hoose
Verdi by Janell Cannon
The Snow Globe Family by Jane O’Connor
Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch by Eileen Spinelli
Enemy Pie by Derek Munson
Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts
If You Find a Rock by Peggy Christian
Animals Nobody Loves by Seymour Simon
OWLS by Gail Gibbons
Fireflies! Julie Brinckloe
The Empty Pot by Demi
The Memory String by Eve Bunting
Voices in the Park by Anthony Browne
My School’s A Zoo! by Stu Smith
The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter
Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson
Spaghetti in a Hot Dog Bun by Maria Dismondy
True Story of The Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka
I Wanna Iguana by Karen Kaufman Orloff
Postcards from Pluto by Loreen Leedy
Why Mosquitos Buzz in People’s Ears by Verna Aardema
Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Pena
Chicken Sunday by Patricia Polacco


Mentor sentences are the perfect way to teach grammar and author’s craft through examples of excellent sentences from your favorite read-aloud books! This unit is just what you need if you have upper grade students without grammar background knowledge.

All of the lessons in this set cover foundational, basic skills and are compiled from Volumes 1, 2, and 3. I have had requests for this from teachers who teach special education or students with very low grammar and writing skills.


Not familiar with mentor sentences? Read all about them here!

**Watch a video of Mentor Sentences in ACTION!**

If you need more proof that the numerous volumes of mentor sentence curricula created by Ideas by Jivey are a best practice in the classroom, download the case study! The download presents the data collected over the 2016-2017 school year in the form of a case study.

There is a 9-page introduction in the FIRST unit with pictures included of how I use mentor sentences in my room (VERY detailed, day-by-day). In each unit, I walk you through each day’s lesson for 40 weeks- all the work is done! I’ve even done all the thinking for you when it comes to revising and imitating!

Each lesson includes the teacher sentence page, the student sentence page, a lesson plan page with possibilities for all 4 days, and a quiz aligned with CCSS with answer key. ★ The quizzes are included as printables and also digital-classroom-ready, provided as Google Slides. ★

Just the Basics Set 1
Just the Basics Set 2
Just the Basics Set 3
Just the Basics Set 4

This will help your students who need extra support. These students might include those with disabilities, English as a Second Language, or just slow writers. Some of your students may struggle to complete the lesson on revision and imitation days for several reasons. They might be slow writers and struggle to get the sentence rewritten. They may have a hard time “seeing” the structure to imitate. Or, they may get overly descriptive and lose focus on the sentence. These modified sentence frames provide a way to help scaffold for your students. After showing the class your example of the revised or imitated sentence and discussing it, provide the sentence frames to the students who need extra support. These modified sentences are not meant for all students – you want students who can think more creatively to be allowed to do so!

Just the Basics Modifications

The interactive language activities provide extra reinforcement of the focus skill during mentor sentences.

First Ten Weeks Companion (Just the Basics)
Second Ten Weeks Companion (Just the Basics)
Third Ten Weeks Companion (Just the Basics)
Fourth Ten Weeks Companion (Just the Basics)

Vocabulary must be taught in context for students to truly understand the words and build relationships with them, and then in turn use them in writing and speaking. Move away from lists of vocabulary words and looking up definitions, and teach students how to comprehend with this best practice bundle! I have provided activities designed on researched best practices for use with popular mentor texts to help you maximize your teaching time. There are open-ended activities and ideas provided that can be used with any words, and I encourage you to incorporate past words in with the current words using these formats for frequent repetition.

Vivid Vocabulary UNIT 1
Vivid Vocabulary UNIT 2
Vivid Vocabulary UNIT 3
Vivid Vocabulary UNIT 4

This product is JAM-PACKED with Common Core aligned lesson ideas, activities, graphic organizers, and writing prompts for 40 of your favorite mentor texts to use in grades 3-5! With over 100 graphic organizers WITH answer keys, you’ll be set for the year (and years after that, too)! It also includes the generic versions of the graphic organizers so you can use them with any book! Activities cover skills such as:
Using evidence to describe, infer, and draw conclusions
Identifying and supporting theme
Identifying and supporting character traits
Explaining figurative language
Identifying vivid language
Supporting opinions
Comparing characters
Comparing texts to media and other texts
Defining words using context clues
…and more!

There is also a writing prompt for every book that ties to the theme, idea, or topic of the book.

Better Than Basal Reading and Writing Units

This download also includes the “At-A-Glance” document for all 40 books in the Just the Basics Sets! This will help you plan by skill.


There are three volumes for grades 3-5 to help prevent repetition of mentor sentence lessons among grades in the same school.

Check out what’s in Volume 1!
Check out what’s in Volume 2!
Check out what’s in Volume 3!

Mentor Sentences can be done in ALL grades! Please tell your teacher friends about mentor sentences for their grade:

Kindergarten & ELL (Early Emergent Readers)
First Grade
Second Grade

Please remember, this purchase is for the use of one teacher. It is not intended to be shared. Please use the ‘additional license’ purchase if more than one teacher will be using it. Thank you!

*The mentor sentence lessons I have created are adapted from the ideas of Jeff Anderson. These lessons were born from the routine that worked well in my classroom, and the demos and examples I present are variations of Jeff Anderson’s methods. This is not the only way to “do” mentor sentences in your classroom.*

Copyright © 2013-2020 Ideas By Jivey, LLC
All rights reserved by author, Jessica Ivey.
Permission to copy for single classroom use only.
Electronic distribution limited to single classroom use only.
Not for public display.

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