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Writers Read Better: Nonfiction

Writers Read Better: Nonfiction
50+ Paired Lessons That Turn Writing Craft Work Into Powerful Genre Reading

July 2018 | 248 pages | Corwin

We know that writing skills reinforce reading skills, but what’s the best way to capitalize on this beneficial relationship? By flipping the traditional “reading lesson first, writing lesson second” sequence, Colleen Cruz ingeniously helps you make the most of the writing-to-reading connection with carefully matched, conceptually connected lesson pairs. The result is a healthy reciprocity that effectively and efficiently develops students’ literacy skills.

Backed by long-term academic and field research, Writers Read Better presents a series of 30 tightly interconnected lesson pairs that can be implemented either as supplement existing curriculum or as a stand alone module. Each pairing leads with a writing lesson, used as a springboard for the reading lesson that will follow.

Throughout the book’s four sections, organized to cover distinct and complementary phases of working with non-fiction texts, you’ll discover

  • Helpful insights on preparing for the section’s overarching goals 
  • Clear guidance on the intention of each lesson, what materials are required, and step-by-step plans for leading the activity 
  • Sample teacher language for leading the lesson
  • Tips on building and organizing your classroom library, and how you can incorporate the tools, technology and media available in your classroom to make each lesson most effective
  • Sample student work, online videos and other supporting resources 

Complete with practical suggestions on adapting the lessons to suit the particular needs of your classroom as well as individual students, Writers Reader Better offers a solid foundation for giving your students the advantage of powerful, transferable literacy skills.

List of Videos
Dedication & Acknowledgments
How to Use this book
Part 1
Lessons for Generating Ideas—and Interpreting Author’s Purpose
What You Will Find in This Section  
When to Use These Lessons  
Preparing to Use the Lessons  
Lesson 1
Writing: An Author’s Expertise Matters  
Reading: Considering the Source  
Lesson 2
Writing: Write About What You Take for Granted  
Reading: Learning Unexpected things from Familiar Topics  
Lesson 3
Writing: The Relationship Between an Author's Passion and Stance  
Reading: Identifying an Author's Stance  
Lesson 4
Writing: Narrowing Down a Broad Topic  
Reading: Understanding Topics and Subtopics  
Lesson 5
Writing: The Role of Structure in Informational Texts  
Reading: Considering How Choices In Structure Affect Meaning  
Lesson 6
Writing: Using Structure to Convey One’s Purpose  
Reading: Inferring Author's Intent by Noticing Structure  
For Digital Classrooms Only
Writing: Choosing the Best Platform for Your Information and Audience  
Reading: Knowing the Differences Between Analogue and Digital Reading to Gain insight Into Intentions  
Part 2
Lessons for Drafting—and Understanding Author’s Craft
What You Will Find in This Section  
When to Use the Lessons  
Preparing to Use the Lessons  
Lesson 7
Writing: Drafting What You’re Most Ready to Write  
Reading: Spotting What’s Most Important to an Author  
Lesson 8
Writing: Structure within Sections: Stacking Information  
Reading: Identifying the Way Information is Stacked  
Lesson 9
Writing: Drafting with Placeholders for Later Facts  
Reading: Using Jots to Note Facts Quickly  
Lesson 10
Writing: Taking a Draft Break to Research  
Reading: Noticing the Various Ways Authors Use Quotation Marks  
Lesson 11
Writing: Drafting with an Audience in Mind  
Reading: Noticing the Different Genres of Various Publications on the Same Topic  
Lesson 12
Writing: Draft in a Mood or Tone that Matches the Content  
Reading: Noticing When the Tone Doesn’t Match the Topic  
Lesson 13
Writing: Drafting to Someone Else’s Specifications  
Reading: Noticing a Publisher’s Approach  
For Digital Classrooms Only
Writing: Digital informational Writers Have a Special Responsibility to Fact Check  
Readers: When you Write with Facts You are Better Able to Identify False Information  
Part 3
Lessons for Revising for Power, Craft, Analysis and Critique
What You Will Find in This Section  
When to Use These Lessons  
Preparing to Use the Lessons  
Lesson 14
Writing: Deciding What's Most Important to Revise  
Reading: Identifying and Questioning the Author's Values  
Lesson 15
Writing: Re-ordering information with Intention  
Reading: Noticing the Effect of Information’s Placement  
Lesson 16
Writing: Exploring How to Weight Information to Signal Import  
Reading: Looking at Texts with an Eye to Volume = Importance  
Lesson 17
Writing: The Power of Story  
Reading: Switching Strategies When Authors Use Story in Expository Text  
Lesson 18
Writing: Connections and Disconnections Across Paragraphs and Pages  
Reading: Tracing Connections and Disconnections in Transitions  
Lesson 19
Writing: Vocabulary's Starring Role in informational Texts  
Reading: Expecting and Responding to the Vocabulary of a Subject  
Lesson 20
Writing: The Slipperiness of Facts  
Reading: Reading with Eyes Wide Open for Bias  
For Digital Classrooms Only
Writing: Adding Dimensions to Our Writing Through Multi-Modal Features  
Reading: Multi-Modal Readers Prioritize Synthesis  
Part 4
Lessons for Preparing for Publication and the Scholarly Study of Texts
What You Will Find in This Section  
When to Use These Lessons  
Preparing to Use These Lessons  
Lesson 21
Writing: First and Last Words: Intros and Conclusions That Attract and Linger  
Reading: Studying an Author's First and Last Words  
Lesson 22
Writing: Choosing When to Quote, Describe or Summarize  
Reading: Identifying Sources and Considering Reliability  
Lesson 23
Writing: Creating Text Features to Enhance and Add Information  
Reading: Integrating Text Features within and Across Texts  
Lesson 24
Writing: Creating Strong Titles and Subtitles  
Reading: Titles and Subtitles that Convey Meaning  
Lesson 25
Writing: The Many Purposes of Paragraphs  
Reading: Seeing Paragraphs as an Author’s Organizational Tool  
Lesson 26
Writing: Punctuating with Intention  
Reading: Looking Across Texts with an Eye to Punctuation  
Lesson 27
Writing: Using Meaning to Make Smart Spelling Decisions  
Reading: The Role of Etymology for Readers  
Lesson 28
Writing: Making Publishing Decisions Based on the Intended Audience  
Reading: Judging the Effectiveness of an Author's Decisions  

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