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Teacher Tips and Answers

Writing a Nonfiction Review

Once you finish prewriting, you are ready to create the first draft of your review. These writing activities will help you create strong beginning, middle, and ending parts. You'll also read another student's review to see how all of the parts work together.

Writing the Beginning Paragraph

Your beginning paragraph should start with a lead sentence, which gets the reader interested in the book. In the next sentence or two, you should identify the title and author of the book. In the last sentence, you should state the focus or the main idea of the book.

Write a lead sentence.

Try out at least two of these strategies for introducing the topic of your review. Read the examples for ideas. Make a copy of this Google doc or download a Word template.

1. Ask a question related to the work.

Have you ever wondered where superheroes come from?


2. Talk directly to your readers about the work.

It’s not every day that you learn how a superhero was born. But when you read “Superman Takes Off” by Stephen Krenzky, you sure do!


3. Introduce an interesting or suspenseful detail from the work.

One day, sometime during the Middle Ages, valuable jewels disappear from the Royal Treasury.


4. Share a feeling you have about the work.

Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World is an exciting book by Jennifer Armstrong.


Write your focus statement.

State the main point of the book. This statement should summarize what the book is about. Make a copy of this Google doc or download a Word template.

The article tells about how Superman made his debut and why he, literally, took off.


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