I am very excited to be linking up with the amazing ladies at Collaboration Cuties for their Must Read Mentor Text linky because it is my first time linking up a science book. I've found a lot of great books from this linky but I've also realized I do not use nearly enough picture books in my science program. I've struggled to think of books to share and I will really, really, really need to work on this next year!
But I do have a book to share today that you could use as a mentor text in science.
You may wonder why a teacher in Canada would be teaching about alligators (not a whole lot of gators running around here) but our school mascot is a gator so......Also it fits with our Grade 4 Habitat and Animal Adaptations unit. One more reason is it is a good non-fiction text.
Here is why I like this book:
*it emphasizes the importance of the alligator to the ecosystem (keystone animal)- how other animals depend on the alligator
*it talks about animals at risk of extinction, how people worked to save the alligator and how the Chinese alligator is still at risk - it poses the question how might the Chinese alligator be saved too
*it includes a quick little activity to show the importance of an alligator hole
*it has many features of a non-fiction text but it is illustrated - this is often confusing to students, they see illustrations and they think it is fiction. I find that my students often confuse "cartoon-like" drawings as a super important indicator and ignore other features. This book does a great job of showing that the other features (characters, setting, problem or facts) are way more important.
Here are a few pics of the book:
Another way I used this book:
*we had a class gator mascot that would go home with students for a week and the students would write journal entries about their adventures with Skippy. As part of the at home package were books on gators (fiction and non-fiction). They read the books, picked a fiction and non-fiction book and did a little reading response page for each.
On a totally unrelated note, I would also like to link up with Molly at Lucky to be in First for her Fabulous Freebies on the Fifteenth. I wanted to quickly link up before it got to far away from the 15th. We are in countdown mode and last week we had "Marshmallow Day" and I made a few little activities I would like to share with you. If you can't tell, I needed to quickly review patterning : )
Click here to pick up the freebie. There are two patterning pages and 3 pages using a chart to find the pattern.