2017 Student Research Conference:
30th Annual Student Research Conference

Audience and Writing Focus: Picture Books as Mentor Texts in the Secondary Classroom

Megan Goebel♦
Dr. Rebecca Dierking and Dr. Summer Pennell, Faculty Mentors

While picture books are normally found in the elementary classroom, educators may employ them in the secondary classroom as well.  Picture books have the potential to summarize complex thematic issues and focus student writing for audience more easily than longer texts.  This case study examines the incorporation of picture books of difficult subjects as mentor texts and a medium for students to understand larger messages in Cormac McCarthy’s post-apocalyptic novel The Road.  Forty-two juniors in a suburban-Midwestern high school crafted their own picture book versions of The Road, focusing on writing for a younger audience while still communicating a central theme of the original novel.  Types of data collected include three different student artifacts including an initial writing sample, a completed picture book, and final reflection along with teacher observations of the creative process.  The data will be utilized to determine if the use of picture books as mentor texts in the secondary classroom impacts the focus of student writing for audience.

Keywords: Secondary Education, English Education, Mentor Texts, Audience, Student Writing, Themes

Topic(s):English MAE Intern
English, Secondary MAE Research

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 202-4
Location: MG 1090
Time: 10:15

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♦ Indicates Truman Graduate Student
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