This idea was submitted by
Denise Stephenson from Calvary Christian College in Carbrook Queensland
When promoting specific AR books with Years 4, 5 and 6 students involved with the AR program, I link fiction with non-fiction titles e.g. Polar the Titanic Bear with books on the Titanic, Tonkin’s “To the Goldfields” with fiction set in the same era, Crew’s “I Saw/Did Nothing” with books about endangered animals.
The popular AR non-fiction books include biographies, books of strange facts, general interest books especially sport, war stories and natural and man-made disasters. The My Story fiction series are a great way to introduce the non- fiction books. Too technical non-fiction is not popular with our AR students as they want to browse these books and not be quizzed on facts.
AR non- fiction picture books used for discussion lessons are displayed on a table with fiction and non-fiction, topic linked from the AR shelves. Topics discussed include Martin Luther King and the Civil Rights Movement, Two World Wars, Ancient Egypt, Heroines, The Gold Rush, Science Fiction and Space Travel, Animal stories (Dewey/fictional cat stores). As I pre-read books, I tag interesting or exciting parts to read extracts and also use audio tapes and YouTube for information or book trailers. Students share books they have enjoyed and interesting facts they have found. New AR titles are promoted in the Library and on handouts which include the picture, title and blurb for each. This sheet is emailed to teaching staff – many use the non-fiction in class and the whole class take the quiz during computer time.