Finding Teachable Moments in Books – a book review

Slice of LIfe

March 25, 2012

Books – it seems that several of us Slicers are sharing books and I decided to join the group today.  How can a book support our learning in many areas?  I look for books that can be mentor text in many ways.  This new release fits into the “genre” easily.

The Boy That Harnessed the Wind

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope

The Boy That Harnessed the Wind II

The Story of William is a true story of a young boy who fights his way through a hard life to get an education.  His perseverance, curiosity, and ingenuity makes a moving tale for students and adults.   They have just recently published the story in a beautiful picture book.  There are two great TED talks  (http://www.ted.com/speakers/william_kamkwamba.html)  where you can hear first hand from William about his journey to learn.

This story or these books fit into the following teaching areas:

  • memoir of his life
  • science non fiction – learning about electricity and wind power
  • self help – value of education – he learns to help him and discover how to learn even when school is not with in his daily reach
  • how image can tell a story – collage images created by Elizabeth Zunon
  • writing – a compare and contrast – chapter book to children’s picture book-               how do we take the essence of a story and share with younger students

I could go on but you get the idea.   It is one of the many things we do well as teachers – looking at books from different perspectives to find the teachable moments for that text.

Enjoy the exploration!

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About Joanne Toft

I am a retired Minneapolis Public School teacher. I walk, garden, help in schools and write. Life is good!
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4 Responses to Finding Teachable Moments in Books – a book review

  1. elsie says:

    I love being able to relate current studies to books for kids. Nonfiction told in an engaging way is something I search for when I look at books. Thanks for the suggestions.

  2. blogpraylove says:

    Thank you so much for this share- always looking for good suggestions for new mentor texts 🙂

  3. jen says:

    I love coming upon new books! Thanks for sharing. Do you recommend an age range for this set? I haven’t heard of it. I will have to add it to my “Go find” list. 🙂

    • The chapter book could be used with 6th through adult. I am sharing bits and piece with my 4th graders. The picture book is great for primary on up – a simple telling of his story. Watch the TED talks – they are great to share with 4th on up. It is wonderful to hear him share his experiences. There is now a web site up as well – just google the book name.

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