5 Reasons to Use Mentor Text

I love to use picture books as mentor text in my classroom.  I love gathering my students on the carpet to read aloud and share some of my favorite books, but also use them as an anchor for the important skills we are learning!  And my students always love to sit and listen to picture books too.  It sometimes feels like there is so much packed into one day, and we expect so much or our students; sitting down to read a good picture book always brings forth amazing conversations and feelings.

Mentor text are anchor text that are used as an example for students.  Students use the mentor text to help impact their own writing.  The mentor text can be read during a mini lesson to help students learn about the skill you are focusing on.   A mentor text provides students with an example of good writing and sets expectations for their own writing.  Mentor text can also provide students examples of important reading skills like inferences, cause and effect, characters, and more.  A mentor text can be a short text, a teacher or student example, a picture book, or excerpt of a longer text. 
While reading mentor text, model how to read as a writer. 
•Why did the author write this text?
•How can this help me?
•Can I try this?
•Have I read another book like this?
•What works for the author?
•What do I notice about the author’s craft?
•How can I apply to my writing?
Mentor text are such an effective way to inspire students’ writing.  They become immersed in the books through your expression, the pictures, and the stories and they can use those feelings as they begin their own writing. 

For a free list of suggested mentor text, you can subscribe to my newsletter below!  This list has 34 suggested mentor text that I love to use in my classroom for different skills and classroom themes...and the skills are all listed for you!

Happy Teaching!


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