Writing Nonfiction Reviews

Writing Nonfiction Reviews
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Writing Nonfiction Reviews guides your students step by step through the process of writing effective reviews of informational texts. Instructions, activities, examples, videos, interactives, and downloads help students learn new skills for analyzing informational texts and writing about them. You can also present this unit right from your interactive whiteboard.

First students warm up by thinking about the nonfiction books they have read about different general subjects. They also list nonfiction books they want to read and subjects they want to read about. Then students read sample paragraph and essay reviews about the nonfiction book Gorilla Doctors: Saving Endangered Great Apes. After responding to the reading, students are ready to write their own responses to a nonfiction book:

  • Prewriting activities help students choose a favorite nonfiction book and gather key details about it.
  • Writing activities help students write a beginning that grabs the reader's interest, names the book and the author, and gives a focus statement for the review. The middle paragraphs provides key details from the book to support and develop the focus statement. The ending paragraph thoughtfully wraps up the review.
  • Revising activities help students revise for appropriate levels of detail and express the book's theme. Students also learn to get a peer review and use a checklist to improve their reviews.
  • Editing activities help students replace "be" verbs with active verbs and edit for commas. An editing checklist lists common errors for students to correct.
  • Publishing activities help students create a clean final copy of their reviews and reflect on what they have learned.

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