Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Picture Book 10 for 10

Today is Picture Book 10 for 10 Day!
Thank you to Mandy Robek and Cathy Mere for developing this  wonderful way to share our favorite picture books!
On the Two Writing Teachers blog, Stacey Shubitz wrote about 10 newly published or soon to be published realistic fiction books, "that will help kids see their own lives reflected in a book. By choosing to share one or more of these books in your classroom, you will provide your students with an opportunity to know they aren’t alone AND that they can write a personal narrative on a similar topic."

I am looking forward to reading and sharing these new titles.  Her post made me think about my favorite realistic fiction books. I have used the following books many times over the years as mentor texts when working with young writers of personal narrative and realistic fiction.  

Ten Picture Books For Narrative Writing

I love how Patricia Polacco "zooms in", slowing the action down in places to capture the reader's attention.

#1. Mrs. Mack by Patricia Polacco

#2. My Rotten Redheaded Older Brother by Patricia Polacco

#3. Thundercake by Patricia Polacco

The following books can help a writer reflect on the people and places dear to us.

#4. The Sunsets of Miss Olivia Wiggins by Lester L. Laminack

#5. All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan

#6. My Great Aunt Arizona by Gloria Houston

#7.  Aunt Flossie's Hats (and Crab Cakes Later) by Elizabeth Fizgerald Howard

#8. One Green Apple by Eve Bunting

#9. Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney

#10.  Roxaboxen by Alice McLerran

In future blog posts I will share the particular craft moves that writers can learn form these authors.  Mini-lesson suggestions to follow!


  1. Thank you for this great list of books and suggestions for linking to writing lessons. I always do a writing lesson on 'MY SPECIAL PLACE' so now have a few more anchor books to share! The Sunsets of Miss Alexia Wiggins is a new title for me so I have marked it as one to look for.

    1. I'm glad you liked the list! I plan to post more detailed writing lessons and teaching ideas in the future. The Sunsets of Miss Olivia Wiggins is a beautiful, touching story! It can be a springboard to writing about memorable times with family members, or the most memorable times in one's own life. It is also a great example of a different way to organize a story with flashbacks and inner thoughts

  2. Your list is filled with beautiful classics. It's great to see how you use them. I too love Patricia Polacco. Thanks for sharing your work.
    Apples with Many Seeds

    1. Thank you for your comment. Patricia Polacco is an inspiration to me as a writer and a teacher. Students are always amazed at how she writes about her own childhood, and are motivated to write their own stories after reading hers.

  3. You've selected so many beautiful books for your list, Heidi!

    1. Thank you, Stacey! Thank you also for giving me the inspiration for the types of books to feature in my list!