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Launching a Historical Fiction Genre Study

Tara Smith finds her sixth graders love historical fiction, but they often lack the background knowledge to understand texts fully. She launches her historical fiction unit with a careful mix of discussion, anchor charts, and shared texts.

Creating a Culture of Book Love

Tara Smith shares some of her favorite online resources for keeping up with new books, as well as organizing tips for classroom libraries.

Getting to the Heart of Theme

Tara Smith shares many strategies for helping her sixth graders get to the heart of understanding themes in literature.

Related Videos
Setting the Stage for Historical Fiction

In this demonstration lesson from a 5th grade classroom, Aimee Buckner works with students to construct an anchor chart for understanding the genre of historical fiction.

Scaring Up Better Narratives Part I

Just before Halloween, Aimee Buckner leads a lesson on brainstorming topics in writer's notebooks using the mentor text Some Things Are Scary. In this first installment of a three-part series, Aimee reads the book and models her own thinking process and use of a writer's notebook.

Stop and Track: Conferring with a Fifth-Grade Reader

In this conference with a 5th grader, Aimee Buckner shares two strategies — one to use when putting a book away between readings, and another to help keep track of characters in a complex narrative where the point of view is constantly shifting.

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