For the past two weeks, second graders have been busy exploring the world of nonfiction books. Through headings, bold print, and text boxes, they have begun to expand their knowledge about topics that interest them: from penguins to basketball, weather to volcanoes. They have focused on noticing details, putting parts of the text together to grow their understanding, and pausing to ask questions. Students have been reading both individually and with a partner to grow their understanding of different topics, and together write down such questions in their “emergency kit,” a sticky note pad and pencil they have with them during the reading block.
This week, students have learned that non-fiction books hold special surprises within their pages; that, when a book surprises you, it is usually because the information is new and exciting. For each student in the class, this unit has either grown their love for nonfiction or ignited a love for nonfiction that previously wasn’t there. American author Tracy Kidder once said, “What I like about non-fiction is that it covers such a huge territory. The best non-fiction is also creative.” They have a daily curiosity and excitement to arrive in the morning and dive back into their books, further looking at the world and all its wonders through a new lens.