Standing on the Shoulders of Giants: Using Author Studies Cammie Price Spartanburg Writing Project Summer Institute 2010
Classroom Application:Share Do you use author studies? If so, how? What has worked well in your classroom? Any roadblocks using author studies?
Why use author studies? There are countless reasons! Top 10 Reasons: • Inspires confident student writing • Builds community of writers joined by a great book • Teaches both process and product • Students become familiar with different genres (memoir, fiction, fairy tales, etc) • Studies can be planned to meet needs of your students-differentiation
6. Children are excited when learning about someone famous 7. Authors become real people 8.Motivates reluctant readers and writers 9.Students can make connections between their reading and writing and with the author’s life and the books they have written 10.Have you ever heard a student say “I’m going to read every one of her books. Hey, we make books too.” (KWR Study Drive)
Classroom Application Eric Carle • At the beginning of each school year, ask parents and students to send in some of their favorite books. • Do you notice repeated authors? Repeated topics? Let this be an indication of student interest. Also get the parents involved from the beginning! CythiaRylant Jan Brett Patricia Polacco
What the Experts Say • “When students bring their identities as people who make books with them to the carpet for minilessons, they look at authors altogether differently/they listen differently to the teaching because of these identities they have” Katie Wood Ray About the Authors • “The writer studies literature…He is careful of what he reads, for that is what he will write.” Dina SechioDeCristofarohttp://nwp.org
How Author Studies Help All Writers • Inspires confident student writing Students will learn that even author’s experience roadblocks when writing, such as rough drafts, writer’s block, and lack of ideas. • Validates student writing Author studies help students read with better understanding and help provide a clear vision for students. Author’s also write, write, and rewrite before publishing their work. “Everything they see in books becomes a possibility, a thing someone might try because, hey, after all, We do this stuff too. We make books too. ” Katie Wood Ray About the Authors
How Author Studies Help All Writer’s • Builds a sense of community of writers joined around a good book Students are familiar with these books on your bookshelf and at home. Helps younger students in their selections at the library. Students are exposed to many texts by the same author. This will help build reading fluency and reading for meaning.
How Author Studies Help Our Reluctant Learners • Captures the interest of our reluctant learners • Provides confidence they need to try their own writing • Engages learners with books they may not have chosen • Helps guide their reading for meaning • When students understand the skills/strategies the author uses, they are more likely to apply them to their own writing
Building an Author Study Unit: learn more about an author using BOOK JACKETS TEACHER TUBE SKYPE-with local artist SNAILMAIL AUTHOR NOTES DEDICATION PAGE INTERNET
Using the Internet to Learn More About Authors http://www2.scholastic.com/browse/index.jsp Author pages http://robertmunsch.com/ http://www.janbrett.com/
Laura Numeroff Author Study • Reading immersion: mentor text read aloud • Close study: Students worked in small groups with Numeroff’s books and used sticky notes to mark things they noticed • We made a class noticings chart with students findings
If You Give a First Grader Recess Page 1-If you give a first grader recess, he will want water Page 2-Then he will want a snack Page 3-If you give him a snack, he will be full and take a nap Page 4-When he wakes up, he will go outside and play with his friends Page 5-When he plays with his friends, he will ask for a ball Page 6-When he is playing with a ball, he will get hot Page 7-When he gets hot, he will want some more water Page 8-Chances are…after he drinks the water, he will want MORE RECESS
Student Samples Carter If You Give a Rhino a Scooter page 1: If you give a rhino a scooter, he'll want to take a ride around the neighborhood. page 2: If he rides around the neighborhood, he will ask for a helmet to go with it. page 3: Then he will see the park. page 4: When he's at the park, he will invite his friends to play. page 5: After he played with his friends, rhino gets tired and goes home. page 6: When he goes home he goes to sleep. page 7: When he wakes up, he sees some wheels on a car. page 8: Of course if he sees the wheels on the car, it will remind him of his scooter.
Zoe If You Give a Moose a Lemon page 1: If you give a moose a lemon, page 2: He will want some tea. page 3: Then he will want to go to the park. page 4: He'll want you to push him on a swing. page 5: He'll probably fall off. page 6: He will get hot and he will then ask for some water. page 7: When he gets the water, he will spill it and slip! page 8: The water will remind him of the tea... page 9: and he'll ask for a lemon to go with it.
If You Give a Penguin a Snowball Alex page 1: If you give a penguin a snowball page 2: He'll want to have a snowball fight. page 3: That will remind him of home. page 4: Then he'll notice the tree in the yard. page 5: When he notices the tree, you'll have to take him home page 6: Then accidently you'll send him a list of things he did. page 7: Then he'll see the snowball fight...and he will ask for a snowball fight to go with it.
Final Thoughts Motivates students! Inspires writing! It’s fun for teachers!!! “Children will learn to write like readers and read like writers with a new appreciation of the effort and joy involved in both.” Barbara Abromitis from Author Studies in an Elementary Classroom
Resources Author Studies in an Elementary Classroom article by Barbara Abromitis http://lesson-plans-materials.suite101.com/article.cfm/author_studies_in_an_elementary_classroom Study Driven by Katie Wood Ray About the Authors by Katie Wood Ray Authors as Mentors by Lucy Calkins and Amanda Hartman National Writing Project Teacher Consultants http://www.nwp.org