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Historical Fiction Book Clubs with Trade Pack

By Mary Ehrenworth, Pablo Wolfe, Edited by Lucy Calkins

Historical fiction helps students see how history is not a collection of old, dead facts to be memorized, but is full of compelling stories that help us understand our present and, perhaps, what we need to do to shape a better future. The reading of historical fiction in this unit will not only kindle in your students an interest in the genre, but will also generate awareness of how much we have yet to learn from history. 

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About the Unit

Historical fiction helps students see how history is not a collection of old, dead facts to be memorized, but is full of compelling stories that help us understand our present and, perhaps, what we need to do to shape a better future. We hope that the reading of historical fiction in this unit will not only kindle in your students an interest in the genre, but that it will also generate awareness of how much we have yet to learn from history and the stories of people who struggled, suffered, and persevered as we do today.

As students progress through these lessons, they will read stories from history that will expose them to hard truths about the world. They will cry out, “That’s not fair!” again and again, and the teacher will respond with “You’re right!” and then ask, “What kind of world do we want to live in? How do we get there?”

About the Units of Study for Teaching Reading, Middle Grades Series

We want our middle grades students to become flexible, resilient readers, we want them to have a toolkit of strategies for dealing with difficulty, and we want them to read broadly and deeply, alert to the intricacies of texts and to the power of language. To accomplish such ambitious goals, we need classroom structures and resources that support this kind of explicit teaching and learning. The reading workshop offers a simple and predictable framework for teaching strategies and for giving students feedback while they are in the midst of the ever-changing, complex reading work they will do across the middle school grades.  

The Units of Study for Teaching Reading series saves teachers hundreds of hours of planning, freeing time for analyzing student work, working with individuals and small groups, and for studying with colleagues. The series provides teachers with the tools and support they need to move students quickly and efficiently toward grade-level expectations, while also helping kids become proficient, lifelong readers.

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