Informational & Opinion Writing: Making Copycat Mentor Texts

"Play With This, Not That" Writing 

After few months ago, I wrote a post about having kids use the "{Anything} for Dummies" books to write in the Explanatory/Informative style of writing.  We all know Informative Writing is Common Core standard W.2 and Opinion Writing is Common Core Standard W.1  So, here's my  idea.... I walking by my classroom library the other day and glanced down and saw the book, Eat This, Not That, and it occurred to me...hey, given another kid-friendly topic, like toys or books, kids could research the best and worst toys to play with and be doing both informative and opinion writing AND working at the two highest levels of Bloom's Taxonomy of thinking.  It could even be a class book where each student creates one "play with this, not that" page. It would involve them researching the best and worst toys to play with, which would require them to EVALUATE toys based on a criteria they would develop and include on their page, where designing a criteria would require them to CREATE an evaluation criteria for judging the "goodness" or "badness" or the toy (or topic).  They could also include other features of non-fiction that informational writers use, like Headings, Labels, Facts & Figures, Sidebars, Diagrams, Hyperlinks, etc.  Be sure to grab my new & updated Informational Text Features Notebook to pre-teach all the features of non-fiction included in the Common Core that students would need have under their belt before composing and crafting as a non-fiction writer.  Kids could easily CREATE these book pages in Powerpoint or Glogster and insert self-made product review videos onto the page.  This activity could easily be an independent higher order literacy option in your literacy block. Would love to see how they turn out!

Other ideas might be:
"Read This, Not That" (with for books)
"Watch This, Not That" (with movies or YouTube videos)
"Fly Here, Not There" (about the solar system)
"Grow This, Not That" (for garden food, plants or flowers)
Raise This, Not That" (for pets)
"Catch This, Not That" (for fish)

Got any good ideas for this? Leave a comment. 

*You'll notice that I bolded and capped the BLOOM'S VERBS for this lesson/activity/research project. I will try to do this for here on out on reading and writing lessons I blog about.  If you follow my blog, you know how I committed I am to getting all kids thinking, reading, writing, speaking and blogging at the three highest levels of Bloom's in the classroom everyday.  If you haven't seen my new Bloom's Classroom Posters, you'll want to grab them.  Like anything, before you display them up on your wall, you'll want to teach kids what they are and why they're important. Like I tell the teachers at my school, "they're not just posters, they're conversations" and then, an anchor for the learning and thinking work.

Link to Bloom's Posters

Happy Reading! -Jen
Follow on Bloglovin



Mrs. L said...

Eat this, not that is actually on my list of books to read. Have you read it before?
Life with Mrs. L

Jennifer Jones said...

Yes, I have. I have the Drink This, Not That too. They are classic non-fiction books where you can open it to any page and learn something.

Jodi said...

I love this idea of an "Eat This, Not That" type writing! What a great idea :)

Fun In First

Jennifer Jones said...

Seems simple enough, right? One of the things I really got from the Teachers College Summer Writing Institute was how we (I) need to use more non-fiction mentor texts.

Back to Top