Story, Nonfiction, and Characters (Real and Made Up) as Mentors: Writing in the World and Writing for the World

By Wilson, Sandip L.; Ferguson, Sadie et al. | New England Reading Association Journal, January 1, 2017 | Go to article overview

Story, Nonfiction, and Characters (Real and Made Up) as Mentors: Writing in the World and Writing for the World


Wilson, Sandip L., Ferguson, Sadie, Ricks, Paul, Crosser, Cynthia, New England Reading Association Journal


Teachers engage young writers with mentor texts, their own writing, writing of other students, and exemplars from children's and young adult literature. Bourque (2016) describes how she shows students moves of writers and highlight the techniques they use in the interests of students writing in and for the world. In her writing about mentor texts she describes the activities in which students discuss how authors introduce a character, establish setting, convey conflict. Bourque shows how teachers read, write, and think about what authors do along with their students. The nonfiction and fiction books in this collection can serve as mentor texts showing how authors structure and develop their writing; they also show how writing influences the lives and work of characters who write in the world and for it. For one character

writing means connection with people she loves in her letters to her grandmother in One Good Thing About America by Ruth Freeman (2017), and with her family in Deja's struggle with her essay in Falling Towers by Jewell Parker Rhodes (2016); characters in other novels reveal their identities through writing with post its or a summer journal.

Writing defines the lives of John Newbery, Noah Webster, and E.B. White in biographies featured here. Melissa Sweet's (2016) biography of E.B. White features drafts of his writing, and includes many quotations from his articles and books about writing and the writer's life. Bourque argues that graphic literature needs to be part of the writing classroom and writes, "Although comics are often considered a genre, the comic format can be used in any genre, including nonfiction, historical fiction, realistic fiction,

fantasies, and mysteries" (p. 72). The collection features an action packed graphic novel featuring a strong and talented woman. The characters in the novels write for different purposes and the books serve teachers and young writers as sources of pleasure and instruction.

Markel, Michelle. (2017). Balderdash: John Newbery and the Boisterous Birth of Children's Books. Illus. Nancy Carpenter. San Francisco, CA: Chronicle Books. Picture Book Biography. Gr 2-6.

As a boy living on a farm in England of the early 18th century John Newbery was more interested in reading than anything else, so as a young man he was off to work for a printer and became a publisher himself. He aimed to publish books for children for whom preachy poems, religious texts, "chopped up versions of adult books," and fables were the standard reading material. He thought children missed out on the many great books on geography, travel and adventure, history, art available to adults. In his birthplace, Reading, England, where he started printing books, and later in London, Newbery aimed to promote fun and pleasure for children, challenging the resistance of reading adults to books written to engage and entertain children.

Webster published alphabet books, little pocket books, books with pictures, and books with rhymes, riddles, stories, and recipes. He printed books on astronomy and arithmetic but Markel focuses on one goal Newbery had- he wanted to publish a novel for children. The History of Goody Two Shoes, the story of orphaned Margery Meanwell, takes it name from the use of the term goody, meaning good wife, and two shoes, a term used in reference to her finally having two shoes. When still a child her parents die leaving her penniless, and with one shoe. In spite of the hardships she faces she betters herself and becomes a teacher, marries a country squire, and acquires two shoes. The novel was a hit in England and America. Like Newbery's other books, this one was penned anonymously, but in the author's note Markel mentions a number of authors, popular at the time, who probably wrote the children's books that Newbery published, including Oliver Goldsmith and Samuel Johnson.

Markel notes the entrepreneurship Newbery in the back matter noting he also sold a patented medicine that he made references to in the books he published, especially The History of Goody Two Shoes. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Story, Nonfiction, and Characters (Real and Made Up) as Mentors: Writing in the World and Writing for the World
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.