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A Suggestion for Units on Writing Narratives/Memoirs
Teaching students to write about their own memories? Here's a mentor text suggestion:

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Here's a thoughtful idea from a fellow teacher:

A Letter & Memoir about a Teacher

This review/activity was generously shared with us by Nevada teacher
Durdana Qureshi
during an
NNWP-sponsored inservice class

on narrative and memoir.

There are many marvelous "mentor texts" that can be used when teaching a unit on narrative or memoir. The review of the book, Thank you, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco, and the activity on this page were written by a Nevada teacher during an in-service class for teachers sponsored by the Northern Nevada Writing Project.

Are you a fan of WritingFix? Use this link to purchase Thank You, Mr. Falker from Amazon.com and WritingFix will receive a small donation to help us continue posting free-to-use resources.

Washoe County teachers, click here to search for this title at the county library.


A Review of this Book & an Activity Suggestion:

In her book, Thank You, Mr. Falker, Patricia Palacco wrote an autobiography about her struggle with reading in elementary school. She wrote right from the start, but when she tried to read, all the letters and numbers would just get jumbled up. Her classmates called her “dummy,” and “toad.” Then, in fifth grade, a new teacher came and discovered Trisha’s secret--that she couldn’t read. He set out to help her prove to herself that she could read. Ms. Polacco said, “Maybe the children who read this book will remember to say thank you to all those teachers they have loved.”

After reading this story to my class ,we practice the form of a letter: date, greeting , body, closing, and signature. I have my class write personal thank-you letters to praise their former teachers during Teacher Appreciation Week. Once the letter is written, students can be encouraged to write a memoir about a favorite memory associated with their favorite teacher.


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