I’ve been grading my grad students’ craft tables, which is a project that carries the most weight for the class. Craft tables are a way to organize one’s thinking about a book that will be used as a mentor text. Craft tables are three columns. The left column includes the craft move (aka: buzz word). The middle column states the pages where the craft move can be found in the text (if it’s not paginated, then students do it themselves). The right column includes an explanation of the craft move (in other words: why the author might be writing in a particular way). Craft moves are a teacher’s way of developing theories about why authors wrote books in particular ways. Since we cannot get inside of a writer’s head, we have to hypothesize why authors wrote in a particular way so we can help students write in similar ways. In order to explain a craft move to a child well, one needs to avoid jargon. Hence, craft moves are a great way for teachers to think through the “why” behind the writing.
- Muncha! Muncha! Muncha! written by Candace Fleming and illustrated by G. Brian Karas
- I heard Candace Fleming speak about this book during her presentation at NCTE in 2011. I’m so glad I finally had a chance to read it, especially since we have some rabbits who like to visit our backyard, despite the fence.
- Old Bearby Kevin Henkes
- This one is available as a board book. Can you say “Amazon Wish List?”
- We’re Going on a Bear Huntwritten by Michael Rosen and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury
- I found a YouTube video of Michael Rosen performing the story. Check it out by clicking on this link: Michael Rosen and Bear Hunt.