The Best Story - one of the first books read each year in Writer's Workshop.  It's great for teaching where writer's get their ideas.  In the end, the main character learns that the best story comes from your heart.  After reading it, give each student a paper heart and they fill it with words/pictures of the things/people they love.  I'm interested in looking at this book.

The Best Story by Eileen Spinelli (this book would be a great introduction to writing workshop or read-aloud for personal narrative)

great for teaching dialogue and point of view

Three Hens and a Peacock: Lester Laminack, Henry Cole: How to appreciate our differences, and strengths. Lester L. Laminack has created a comical look at what happens when we underestimate the value of others' work.

Some great mentor texts here for narrative, informational, and opinion/persuasive writing!!

Writing Workshop Mentor Texts for 1st and 2nd Grade

Reading and examining mentor texts with students is a powerful strategy for teaching writing.Just about any book can serve as a mentor text, depending upon what your students' skills are and what 


Using mentor texts in any writing unit is important, but especially in opinion writing which is generally unfamiliar to students. Pigeon books are especially engaging, and funny too!

children's books biography that model a growth mindset

30 Biographies That Encourage a Growth Mindset

30 Biographies That Encourage a Growth Mindset help your children learn about growth mindset with these excellent biographies

This was great to read when discussing character traits and how a character changes.

This was great to read when discussing character traits and how a character changes.--> because every middle schooler loves when the teacher brings out children's books!

Graphic organizers and a blog post on writing personal narratives.

Help young writers organize their thoughts to focus on the topic at hand with these easy-to-use graphic organizers for personal narratives.

mentor text for inferring

The Circus Ship - Chris Van Dusen - A Maine Author. The illustrations are amazing, based on a true story.

mentor texts - personal narratives - narrowing the topic

Roller Coaster by Marla Frazee. I used this book to talk about small moments in personal narratives.the kids loved this book (Grade

Mentor Texts--Inferring

The Sweetest Fig Chris Van Allsburg is the master of leaving his audience inferring!

This book really lends itself to not just discussion of metaphor, but the idea of extended metaphor. The story is very sweet and would also be great for discussing theme. After reading the book, students write a four metaphor poem.  To accompany this book I would also have my students read the poem "Hope" by Emily Dickinson.  It would flow well with the topic of extended metaphor.

Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox. Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox. A great book for introducing writer's notebook or writing workshop. Check out the lesson ideas on the linked page.