Mentor texts are one of my favorite tools to use in the classroom and I love using them to teach grammar.
To me, grammar is just one of those subjects that needs some spicing up. It’s kind of like mashed potatoes without any salt. Sure, it’s functional, but it’s so much better when you take a bit of time to jazz it up.
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In this post, I wanted to share some fun books to motivate your kids, while reinforcing those pesky parts of speech.
When I use these mentor texts, I like to do them in several different ways:
1. Read a Page or Two and Kids List the Part of Speech You are Featuring
This is so simple to do but it really trains kids to use their ears for a purpose!
2. Give the Kids a Signal to Do When They Hear the Highlighted Part of Speech
This signal could be as simple as raising your hand, doing a peace sign, touching your nose, putting your hands on your head, making a “V” with your arms if you hear a verb (or any other first letter for that part of speech). They can also clap or snap (tell the kids who can’t, to just fake it!), or stomp once, or stand up and then sit down… The possibilities are endless.
3. For Older Kids: Use Whiteboards to Make a List of Words You Hear
My classes have always loved competition and really get into it, no matter what the prize is (or even if there isn’t a prize). At the end of the book, they love to see who has the longest list.
Here are some great books that you can share with your students as an introduction to some parts of speech or as a review:
Here’s where you can grab NOUN mentor texts:
- Merry-Go-Round by Ruth Heller
- Nouns and Verbs Have a Field Day by Robin Pulver
- A Mink, a Fink, and a Skating Rink: What is a Noun? by Brian P. Cleary
- A Lime, a Mime, and a Pool of Slime by Brian P. Cleary
- Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson
- An Ambush of Tigers by Betsy R. Rosenthal
- If You Were a Noun by Michael Dahl
- Incredible Ned by Bill Maynard
- 101 Collective Nouns by Jennifer Cossins
Here’s where you can grab VERB mentor texts:
- Shake, Rattle, and Roll by Abigail Flesch
- To Root, to Toot, and to Parachute by Brian P. Cleary
- Kites Sail High by Ruth Heller
- Nouns and Verbs Have a Field Day by Robin Pulver
- What Are They Doing: A Fun Book of Animals and Verbs by Molly McIntyre
- Bullfrog Pops! by Rick Walton
- It’s Hard to Be a Verb! by Julia Cook
- If You Were a Verb by Michael Dahl
- The Z was Zapped by Chris Van Allsburg
Here’s where you can grab ADJECTIVE mentor texts:
- Many Luscious Lollipops by Ruth Heller
- Toad by Ruth Brown
- Pig, Pigger, Piggest by Rick Walton
- The Very Cranky Bear by Nick Bland
- The Napping House by Audrey Wood
- Hairy, Scary, and Ordinary: What Is an Adjective? by Brian P. Cleary
- The Berenstain Bears: Old Hat, New Hat by Stan and Jan Berenstain
- If You Were an Adjective by Michael Dahl
- The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle
Here’s where you can grab CONJUNCTIONS mentor texts:
- Same, Same, but Different by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw
- Just Me and 6,000 Rats by Rick Walton
- But, And, For, Yet, and Nor: What is a Conjunction? by Brian P. Cleary
- Peanut Butter & Cupcake by Terry Border
- The Purple Balloon by Chris Raschka
- Milk and Cookies by Frank Asch
- Fantastic! Wow! and Unreal! by Ruth Heller
- If You Were a Conjunction by Nancy Loewen
- Conjunctions by Ann Heinrichs
Here’s where you can grab PREPOSITIONS mentor texts:
- Rosie’s Walk by Pat Hutchins
- Around the House the House Chased the Mouse by Rick Walton
- In, Over, and On! by Ethan Long
- Under, Over, By the Clover: What is a Preposition? by Brian P. Cleary
- If You Were a Preposition by Nancy Loewen
- Banjo and Ruby Red by Libby Gleeson
- Where Are You? by Sarah Williamson
- Behind the Mask: A Book About Prepositions by Ruth Heller
- Where is Louie? by Deb Lonergram & Toni Johnson
Here’s where you can grab ADVERBS mentor texts:
- Dearly, Nearly, and Insincerely by Brian P. Cleary
- The Big Problem and the Squirrel Who Eventually Solved It by Nancy Loewen
- Up, Up, and Away by Ruth Heller
- Suddenly Alligator by Rick Walton
- Slowly, Slowly, and the Sloth by Eric Carle
- The Maestro Plays by Bill Martin
- Lazily, Crazily, Just a Bit Nasally: More About Adverbs by Brain
- If You Were an Adverb by Michael Dahl
- Little Owl’s Night by Divya Srinivasan
Wow! That’s a ton of mentor texts! You should be set for the school year! Need more grammar posts? Check these out!
In another grammar post, Using Games to Teach Parts of Speech, I listed some class games (totally free and lots of fun) that I like to use when teaching parts of speech.
In 8 Ways to Make Grammar Fun, I described some really fun activities to turn students from grammar haters into grammar lovers!
Need some new grammar resources?
I really love using these print and digital Grammar Games Bundles! There’s a grammar game for EVERY STANDARD! The bundles have a variety of game formats to keep your students engaged! Click here to see 3rd grade, 4th grade, or 5th grade Grammar Games.
What do you do to spice up your grammar lessons? I’d love to hear from you.
Thanks for stopping by!