High Interest Nonfiction - Germantown School District

Jeff Schreiber
Germantown High School
WEMTA 2013
Goals for today
 Define
the idea of high interest
 Discuss the rationale for using it
and focusing on it
 How I have used it
 Strategies for promotion, ordering
What is high interest nonfiction?
Other names: narrative nonfiction, creative
nonfiction, literary nonfiction, long-form
journalism, fact-based storytelling
Something that reads like fiction, but is
Has the ability to teach while telling a story
Informative, yet entertaining
Reality vs. phoniness
Can be extended
Why focus on HI nonfiction?
Common Core skills
By 12th grade 70% will be informational text
Text complexity
Mirror of fiction skills (plot, character,
theme, etc)
Decoding to comprehension(analysis,
inference, synthesis)
Coverage across disciplines in one book!
Argument, evidence, critical thinking,
Focus on craft or writing style
Analysis: Physical Space
How many nonfiction books do I have on
 How is my access to nonfiction
 Do I have any promotions for nonficiton?
 Would I be moved to browse in the
nonfiction sections?
 How are my nonfiction sections labeled?
Analysis: Nonfiction Collection
Doing some digging!
 Look
up % of fiction vs nonfiction
 Look up age of collection
 Analyze Dewey for strong areas and
areas of most use
Destiny Data: Age/Circs/Copies
Analysis: 2008-2013
Average Age
Items in nonfiction
Total Items
Analysis: Audience
What are your student demographics?
 What is your school known for?
 What about the location/town of school?
 What are curriculum strengths?
 Dialog with kids about personal interests
Develop a comprehensive plan
How much of the collection do you want
Book length – I found 300 pages or so to
be a “magic” number
What subject areas need work—prioritize!
What are your strengths/weaknesses?
What are the “sacred cows” of the teachers
30-40 % of orders nonficiton
Where do I get my ideas for
Nonfiction- You have to work for it—
there really are few “lists” to use
 Avid reader of newspapers
 Booklist
 NY Times and NY Times Book Reviews
 Best Seller Lists
 Walking through Barnes and Nobles
 Read a variety of magazines
 Listen to NPR
Titlewave Data: Ordering
Titlewave Data: Ordering
Strategies – involve teachers!
Have “staff experts” in fields that you
can refer kids to
 Promote staff choices-shelfari display
 Teacher book review videos
 Encourage nonfiction selections to staff
members once you know their interests
and subject areas
Strategies – in the classroom
Sell the idea of a nonficiton requirement
in both curricular and independent areas
 Article of week
 Social activism units
 Promoting current events discussions in
 Remind them that administrators LOVE
anything with nonfiction!!
Strategies/promotion - kids
Creating resource lists that have fiction
and nonfiction
 “Finding it in Dewey” display
 Focus on your physical area for
 You can’t make this stuff up!! Create
interesting connections (see the TV
Promotion - display
Promotion- displays
Use your imagination!
Teach Perspective
Tyler Hamilton
Lance Armstrong
If you like this—you may like that…….
If you like this—you may like that!
Mistakes? You will make them
Hard to trust pop culture!
Death will influence
Mistakes can be made!
People embellish
Future issues to consider
Dewey Vs Genre
 Fiction as nonfiction – the Armstrong
issue – Does it matter?

similar documents