Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Behind the Books: Writing STEM Picture Books, Part 6

Since the beginning of the year, I’ve been discussing the ins and outs of writing STEM picture books, including its key craft elements. (Scroll down to read earlier posts in this discussion.) Today I’m going to focus on text structure.

Common Core espouses six major text structures. But in truth there are many more.

Nearly all life stories have a sequence structure, but expository nonfiction can have just about any text structure you can think of. As I describe in the revision timeline I created for Can an Aardvark Bark?, finding the right text structure is the most challenging and most creative part of writing expository nonfiction.

Identifying the best text structure often goes hand in hand with selecting a text format, which I’ll be talking about after school vacation.


  1. Figuring out the structure is always an adventure for me! I love trying different approaches for the same content. It's a little like a child playing dress-up for the day and seeing which outfit feels just right! Princess, dragon, zebra, racecar...what shape should these ideas take?

  2. Indeed it does, and it often coincides with finding the right voice too.

    1. Yes, my post about voice is coming up. Really, voice, text structure, writing style, point of view, and format are all intertwined.