This first set of books is my absolute favorite! I just came across them this summer on Amazon as I was searching for something else (always happens!). They are a set of 3 books, one for each writing genre - opinion, informational and narrative. (Each book is also available separately.)
Each book is written from the point of view of Stella, a second grader who LOVES to write! She shares how she and her class learn to write each genre, pointing out the important information and tips her teacher gives her, as she does her own writing. Here's a sample page from Stella and Class: Information Experts:
If you can't tell, Stella is going through the entire writing process with her teacher and her class, sharing her thoughts and ideas as she goes. On these pages she's talking about how to focus your research on questions, stay organized and use multiple sources.
I am planning on using this book when we begin writing expository text. We'll read the whole book at first, helping us to create an anchor chart focusing on important "tips" for writing a good informational piece. Then we can go back and revisit the text when we do mini-lessons on each part.
Now - here's the best part! Janiel Wagstaff, the author of these wonderful books, has created a website devoted to how to use these books in the classroom! There is a page for each of the three books, with links to strategies, tips and (check this out!) - copies of Stella's writing for students to use as a mentor text! You can download a copy of her notes, first draft and final copy!
These books would work well in any primary classroom, but are especially well-suited for second grade. You can head to her site to look around by clicking on the image below.
But wait! Hang on and don't go yet! I have two more series to share with you. (The website will still be there when you're done reading, I promise :-)
Show Me A Story is part of a series of books called "Writer's Toolbox" by Nancy Loewen. Each book focuses on a different kind of writing (fairy tales, letter writing, opinion writing, etc.). Throughout the books are sidebars with the "tools" to use to write a great piece of text.
I can see my students using these books in a writing center or as part of some independent writing. The prompts could also be used as whole-class writing ideas, as well. Again, there are other books in this series covering different genres.
That's it! I'm really excited abut using all these books in my classroom this year. I'm always on the lookout for books to use with EVERYTHING I do! (And just an FYI... if you search these authors on Amazon, you'll see that two of them have other books great for the classroom, as well!) Happy writing!