How to Heal a Broken Wing is one of my favorite books to use as an illustrative study mentor text. This book is essential any kindergarten classroom and I will tell you why!
I’ll start with reading. We use this book in our Guiding Readers units because it BEGS to be read over and over again. I have said this many times, you can’t have a meaningful conversation about a book that does not grab at your heart. You can’t talk deeply about a book when that book lacks depth. This book does that. It makes you FEEL and it makes your students FEEL! What is amazing about this book is its simplicity! The text is accessible for early learners.
One activity we do with almost every Guiding Reader unit has a retelling of the text with text details.
Having the retelling cards make this activity so concrete for the students.
Several years ago, a few bloggers got together to conduct a blog book study on Katie Wood Ray’s book In Pictures and in Words. This book changed the way I thought about writing. You can read more about that book study by going HERE.
On page 97 of that book, Katie writes about the decisions writers [illustrators] need to make about their content. They are:
- What, exactly, will I picture in my pictures?
- Will I use a single illustration, or multiple, separate vignette illustrations?
- Will I zoom in very close or zoom out and show a wide angle?
- Will I picture my subject from the front or the back? From the side, perhaps? From about or below?
- How much backgroud detail will I use for the central image? Lots, or none at all? If none, at all, should I leave it white, or use another color?
- Will I stick close to the words, or will my illustration extend them in some significant way?
So let’s look at a few of these illustrations from the book. Keep the questions above in mind… because each question could be a fantastic series of mini-lessons.
GAH! Just look at this illustration. So much expression of care and emotions!
Let’s think about the text on each of these pages… it is sparse. YES! Writers can tell a story with pictures! We want to teach students to think deeply about what they want to say in their writing. Over time, letter/sound association will come, but FIRST, they need to tell a story (sometimes it is done with illustrations.)
Deanna Jump and I have created a series of detailed lesson plans for your entire year for writing. In these lessons, we page homage to the value of illustrative studies. You can see those lesson plans HERE.
Despite the 6 inches of snow, we got this week, we know spring is coming! Here are some poems for April. Did you know we have songs and videos for each of my monthly poems? You can see them HERE.
Math and Literacy Centers
These Just Roll With It centers are so fun!
Having predictable monthly centers are a MUST. We don’t have time to explain the activity, RIGHT? Students need to practice skills to make them permanent. These centers do the job. You can find April’s HERE or the bundle HERE.
You can download my lesson plans by clicking on the image below.
Have a great week!
Note, this blog post contains affiliate links, but the opinions are my own.