IB-PYP Risk-taker: Using a mentor book & Independent Writing- Archie’s Haircut by Lindy Smith: 6/7&8 year old writers respond to a quote from the text.

The name mentor book was introduced recently to me and although I’ve always used fiction and non-fiction books to hook students in and support teaching and learning, I’m now strategic with my approach to their planned use. Last week I was thinking about a text to reinforce the IB Learner Profile Risk-takers. One literacy focus for writing was verbs and for reading it is writer’s purpose and message.

Risk-takers: Definition

They approach unfamiliar situations and uncertainty with courage and forethought, and have the independence of spirit to explore new roles, ideas and strategies. They are brave and articulate in defending their beliefs. IB-PYP

Last weekend I stumbled across an author selling her picture story books. I’m keen to support writers who have the courage to self-publish. The book is Archie’s Haircut by Lindy Smith and is part of a growing series of Archie the Black Alpaca stories. When I read the text I knew the story would be perfect to support discussion around risk-taking when learning. The vocabulary supported a focus on verbs and the author’s message is articulated clearly within the text.

My students were read the story and asked to think about the author’s message. After a oral Think, Pair and Share students were asked to respond to the following quote and describe the author’s message.

Even if you don’t succeed you will learn a lot when you try.

Alpacas and Mentor Book 047

Student A:

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Student B:

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Alpacas and Mentor Book 046

Student C:

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Student D:

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Student E:

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Student F:

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Alpacas and Mentor Book 055

Alpacas and Mentor Book 057

Student G:

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Alpacas and Mentor Book 060

Student H:

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Student I:

Alpacas and Mentor Book 069

This is a random selection of writing from my grade. The bigger lined books are used by 6/7 year olds and the smaller lines by my 7/8 year old students. My students are responsible for the editing of their writing and their Have A Go spelling books are supporting this well.

Cheers Nina

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