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Texts and Lessons for Content-Area Writing

With More Than 50 Texts from National Geographic, The New York Times, Prevention, The Washington Post, Smithsonian, Harvard Business Review and Many Others

By Nancy Steineke, Harvey "Smokey" Daniels

Whatever your content specialty, you’ll find texts you want to teach and ones that kids want to write about. Nancy and Smokey have compiled more than 50 reproducible mentor texts, 36 ready to use lessons, and more than 200 options for meaningful, extended writing projects.

Star Special Offer: Save 30% off our list price automatically when you buy 15 or more.


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List Price: $41.25

Web/School Price: $33.00


This product is part of the series:  The Texts and Lessons Series

Full Description

 • Over 50 reproducible mentor texts that demonstrate the moves of skillful nonfiction writers
• 36 ready to use content-literacy lessons designed to engage students in close reading, quick writing, and lively discussion
• More than 100 options for meaningful, content-focused extended writing projects. 

“Using these practical lessons, you can teach your own subject matter in more compelling and memorable ways—and at the same time, help your students become better thinkers and writers across the day and through the year.” —Harvey “Smokey” Daniels and Nancy Steineke

Content-area teachers, rejoice once again:  Harvey “Smokey” Daniels and Nancy Steineke bring you the companion volume to their ever popular Texts & Lessons for Content-Area Reading—this time helping students “write to learn,” using powerful writing and thinking strategies that get students engaged in your content and prepare them for academic writing, but don’t increase your workload. 

“And here’s the bonus you’ll only believe once you try this stuff,” Smokey and Nancy write, “these strategies add joy to our teaching. Classes feel crisper and more energetic; there is flow between writing and talking, reflection and action.”
Three text set lessons designed to be studied, written about, and debated together are divided into three nonfiction writing genres:

• Narrative Nonfiction
• Explanatory/Informational
• Persuasive texts/argumentative

NEW! A new web support feature in this edition includes downloadable copies of all the texts, articles, forms, prompts, and images that accompany lessons. Writing to learn in your content area has never been so cool—or so easy.

(click any section below to continue reading)



Ch. 1 Writing to Learn Content

Ch. 2 How to Use This Book

Ch. 3 Setting the Stage for Writing

Ch. 4 Sparking Thinking with Quick Writes

Ch. 5 Writing Before, During, and After Reading

Ch. 6 Taking Note

Ch. 7 Digging Deeper Into Texts

Ch. 8 Time for an Argument

Ch. 9 Writing for Understanding

Ch. 10 Closer Writing About Content

Ch. 11 Writing an Interview with Paul Robeson

Ch. 12 Creating a Fact Sheet About Edible Insects

Ch. 13 Writing a Letter to the Editor About Military Animal Use

Appendix 1: Skills Addressed in the Lessons

Appendix 2: Common Core Writing Standards Addressed in the Lessons

WrapUp Media Sources


In Depth

We are Smokey Daniels and Nancy Steineke, joining you with a new resource that we hope you’ll find useful. This is the third in our series of Texts and Lessons books, each designed to help teachers of any subject enhance their students’ ability to understand—and this time, to also write about—texts and topics.

Here is what this book will do for you:

  • Build students’ writing fluency, confidence, clarity, correctness, and craft through frequent, high-quantity practice (in short: improve student writing)
  • Dramatically increase student engagement
  • Build and extend your students’ subject-area knowledge
  • Nurture a supportive, collaborative learning climate
  • Spark thoughtful, lively discussion
  • Help you teach thirty-five ready-to-use content-literacy lessons
  • Introduce your kids to more than fifty kid-friendly “mentor texts” that demonstrate the “moves” of skillful nonfiction writers
  • Generate concrete evidence of kids’ thinking and writing skills
  • Provide one hundred example topics for extended writing projects
  • Create a safe space for respectful peer feedback on writing
  • Complement the efforts of all your school colleagues as you prepare kids for high-stakes external assessments.

This resource has three main sections: two are in your hands; the third is online. Chapters 3 through 10 present thirty-five strategy lessons for engaging students’ content-area reading, writing, and discussion, using thirty-seven short “mentor texts.” In Chapters 11, 12, and 13, we offer three text set lessons, using thematically connected assortments of pieces designed to be studied, written about, and debated together. On the web, you’ll find downloadable copies of all the texts, articles, forms, prompts, and other projectables for your classroom.


Related PD Services



Email if you would like to contact Nancy Steineke directly about professional development support.



Email if you would like to contact Harvey "Smokey" Daniels directly about professional development support.