PROFESSIONAL READING

36 Workshops To Get Kids Writing: From Aliens to Zebras

240p. appendix. illus. index. notes. ALA. Mar. 2018. pap. $49. ISBN 9780838916483.
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As libraries strive to create lifelong readers, they may be overlooking a valuable element. Hurtado urges them to pair reading with writing, asserting that "creative writing is a child-driven activity that motivates [students] to learn how to write and makes them better readers." To simplify the process, the author presents 36 "writing parties" revolving around picture books. She includes Common Core State Standards, a "PR Blurb" that discusses each lesson's goals and summarizes the book being used, and all handouts needed. The lessons are blocked into segments ranging from five to 30 minutes, for a total of 60 to 90 minutes. The featured titles are grouped thematically into sections such as "Fractured Fairy Tales," "Animal Muses," and "The Plot Thickens." Making a convincing case for including writing in children's programing, this well-organized work covers all the necessary components to implement these lessons. A chapter on "Books To Feed the Young Author's Spirit" and two appendixes—one explaining how to make blank books and one with story elements organizers—round out the volume.
VERDICT Highly recommended for public and school librarians, who will confidently be able to infuse writing into children's programs.

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