Thursday, August 5, 2010

Organizing my Mentor Texts

The beginning of the school year is here. Organizing ourselves for the beginning of the school year is the key to a smooth year. It is impossible to think of every little detail ahead of time, but some things we can predict or learn from experience. One of the things I use the most in my lessons for either reading or writing are mentor texts. These books are the backbone of my literacy program for ELLs. I need and depend on them in order to either prove my point, ease the transition or provide model for the final outcomes or expectations.

Through the years I've collected many many mentor texts. I think of them as an "investment" (It helps me justify the money I spend on them, yikes!).  This summer I came up with two ways of organizing my mentor texts in order to keep a better track of what I have and their endless possibilities.
Today I'll share with you one of those ideas. Here is what I did, a system that works for me. It might work for you or it might inspire you to come up with something that would work for you.

First, I purchased address labels by bulk (Sam's Club was my choice). Then I generated a label that could be used for mostly fictional books and poetry as well.  The label reads like this:



Possible Mentor Text for:

Memoirs/Small moments
Comparions        Repeating Lines
Punctuation     Characterization
Noticing Language/Vocabulary/Word Choice


So it looks like this....

Then I added a label to the inside of my collection of mentor texts and highlighted the possible ways I could use that particular book. 

 I'm excited to discover other features as I use each of these mentor texts. It seems to me that every time I re-read a book, I find other ways I could use that book. Love this journey of being a reader, it is a never ending one, for sure!

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