Happy Halloween! And what better way to make it a Happy Halloween than to pair some perfect mentor texts and their skills and strategies with the holiday?
Stumpkin by Lucy Ruth Cummins
I teach sequencing of events once a month in my classroom as it is a huge skill that leads to comprehension, and this book fits perfectly for the month of October. The author also provides an important opportunity in the middle of the book to stop, think, and create your own inferences of what could happen.
You can use any or all of these books in your lesson. My favorite way to use them is making one of them my whole group lesson for descriptive writing and then save the other 2 as small group lessons for fluency and reader’s theater. **Don’t forget to sign up for my email subscription list below to get your freebies for these books!**
Lastly, another book recently came out called D is for Drool that is great to use at different reading levels and to teach phonics.
Bonaparte Falls Apart by Margery Cuyler
I use this book to teach problem and solution and inferences. I have my students use a blank piece of paper divided into 8 squares to identify the main problem, the different ways the monsters try to solve it, how each student would try to solve the problem, and then how it is ultimately solved.
The Widow’s Broom by Chris Van Allsburg
This book does have more of a creepy, spooky theme and is perfect for students that love this type of Halloween vibe. I use this as my grammar mentor text for the week to talk about possessive nouns. I also use it for making inferences with sticky notes.
The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin by Joe Troiano
This book is the perfect opportunity to cover theme. This is a fun and easy book to reteach this lesson, and if students have already heard this story, it can sometimes make it a better lesson for them to write a theme statement with supportive evidence.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling
Okay, so I’m a Harry Potter FANATIC and if you’ve been around for a little while, you have seen how I go all out making my classroom into Hogwarts each year. I start this book on October 1st and use it to focus on setting the scene, and tying in the picture books for the different lessons. Not to mention, the illustrated version has the most beautiful illustrations that I like to share at the end of each chapter with my students.
The Monster Who Lost His Mean by Tiffany Strelitz Haber
You can read this book anytime of the year, but with the monster theme, I love to incorporate it into my mentor texts around Halloween time. This is a good book to have in your classroom to focus on SEL, characterization, and small groups.
Here a few other fun mentor texts to share with your students around Halloween:
I’m Trying to Love Spiders by Bethany Barton has great non-fiction text structure and facts about spiders.
The Good, the Bad, and the Spooky by Jory John and Pete Oswald is perfect for teaching character traits as well as the author’s other The Bad Seed books.
If you’re looking for more in depth, free PD on these books as well as Day of the Dead books, check out my Literacy Live on Instagram and tune in each week for different topics!