Saturday, November 23, 2019

NCTE Handout: 12 Ways Expository Nonfiction Can Inspire Reading, Writing, and Inquiry


Description: You may not love expository nonfiction, but many of your students do. It motivates fact-loving kids to read, and it can help ALL students develop informational writing skills. In this session, six highly-regarded educators share creative ideas for using finely-crafted expository nonfiction children’s books in the classroom.

Here is a list of the books we discussed:

Handimals: Animals in Art and Nature by Silvia Lopez and Guido Daniele



Actual Size by Steve Jenkins

If Elephants Disappeared by Lily Williams





Beware of the Crocodile
by Martin Jenkins


A Colony of Bees
by Lucia Raatma


The Forest in the Trees
by Connie McLennan



North America
by Sarah Albee and Willian Exley



Wait, Rest, Pause: Dormancy in Nature by Marcie Flinchum Atkins


Alyson Beecher is an educator and school administrator. She works with Glendale Unified School District in the Early Education and Extended Learning Programs. She has worked as a Special Education Inclusion Teacher, Special Education Administrator, Elementary Principal, and District Curriculum Specialist. She loves reading and getting books into the hands of children and hosts the Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge on her blog, Kid Lit Frenzy. She serves on the American Library Association's Schneider Family Book Award Committee. Twitter: @alysonbeecher

Shanetia P. Clark is an associate professor of literacy at Salisbury University. She teaches courses in children’s literature, creative arts, and literacy methods. She is the co-editor of an upcoming series about African-American authors of young adult literature.  Dr. Clark has served on book award committees and boards that celebrate literature for young people. Twitter: @uvagradu8

Terrell Young is professor of children's literature at Brigham Young University. He has published numerous articles and has co-authored or co-edited several books including Deepening Students' Mathematical Understanding with Children's Literature. Terry currently serves as the president of the United States Board on Books for Young People. He has served on numerous book award selection committees, including the Newbery Medal.

Ruth McKoy Lowery is professor of children’s literature and interim chair of the Department of Teaching and Learning at the Ohio State University. Her research focuses on immigrant and multicultural literature, the adaptation of immigrant students in schools, and preparing teachers for a diverse student population. Recent co-edited publications include Immigrant Experiences (2019) and Exploring Nonfiction Literacies (2018). Her motto “Just read” encapsulates her love of reading and belief in sharing great books with readers of all ages.

Mary Ann Cappiello is a professor at Lesley University.  Along with Erika Dawes, she is the co-author of Teaching with Text Sets, Teaching to Complexity, and a forthcoming book with Stenhouse Publishers. She blogs at "The Classroom Bookshelf," a School Library Journal blog and served on NCTE's Orbis Pictus Committee from 2015-2018. Twitter: @MA_Cappiello

Erika Thulin Dawes is a professor of language and literacy at Lesley University, where she strives to equip teachers with a passion for children's literature and a wealth of creative strategies for using books in the classroom. Having worked as a classroom teacher, a reading specialist, and a literacy supervisor, she knows that great teachers and great librarians inspire lifelong readers. Erika is co-author of Teaching with Text Sets and Teaching to Complexity: A Framework for Evaluating Literary and Content-Area Texts. Twitter: @erikadawes

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