Sometimes a student’s best teacher is another student

If ever there were a book to respond to the pressure to increase students’ test scores, this is it. You see, Gretchen Bernabei and Judi Reimer have had amazing success using mentor texts by students to teach writing well in any genre. Now, they "hand over their file drawers" and pair 101 student essays with one-page lessons on topics such as how to:

  • Choose a structure across genres
  • Extract thesis statement and main points
  • Support points with details
  • Use rhetorical devices and grammatical constructions
  • Write from the point of view of a fictional character



"Here is what I love about this book: It has gobs and gobs of student writing samples with smart and lively explanations of how to use each as the focus of a craft lesson to teach writing. The right models of student writing are the best mentor texts a teacher can find and with this book, you need look no further. . . . Breathe, fellow writing teachers. Much needed and wanted help has arrived."--Ruth Culham, Author of Traits Writing

"Gretchen Bernabei is a wizard. In this book she provides wonderfully practical help for instruction in narrative, expository, and argumentative writing. And like all her work, it rests on a dynamic sense of 'structure'. At a time when writing instruction is becoming increasingly formulaic, Gretchen continues to show the wealth of options students can have for developing their ideas and expanding on their experiences." --Thomas R. Newkirk, Author of Holding On to Good Ideas in a Time of Bad Ones

"Gretchen Bernabei has done it again--only better. Fun-Size Academic Writing for Serious Learning plops us down in the middle of the disheveled process of writing and gives us concrete ways to navigate through. This book stands apart in two ways. First, it gives us myriad unpublished mentor texts written by students with diverse abilities and backgrounds. Second, its a la carte format makes it a perfect resource from which teachers can cull lessons."--Kay Shurtleff, President

"Once again, Gretchen Bernabei weaves together masterful, concrete strategies with powerful student examples. Gretchen provides text structures and student models to move authentic writing beyond traditional formulas. This book is a must read/must try for all ELA teachers."--P. Tim Martindell, Ed.D, President-Elect

  • Age Range: 8 and up 
  • Series: Corwin Literacy
  • Paperback: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Corwin; 1 edition (August 6, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1452268614
  • ISBN-13: 978-1452268613
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 8.8 x 11 inches

Fun-Size Academic Writing for Serious Learning


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