Thursday, January 17, 2013

Albert Marrin - A New Fan!

Albert Marrin is an incredible writer.  I mentioned Years of Dust in a previous post.  It's an incredible resource for taking a closer look at one of the most devastating human catastrophe's in American History.  My sister, Joy, has told me stories of the dust bowl (she's 83) from her own experiences in Kansas.  I can only imagine.  Years of Dust reminds us of the importance of conservation and reading it is like walking through history... and important part of our nation's past. 
     At NCTE, I attended a wonderful session called "Energize Research Reading and Writing Across All content Areas:  Engaged Notetaking, Expert Writing" presented by Christopher Lehman and Kate Roberts.  Both Christopher and Kate were wonderfully engaging and I left with another Albert Marrin title in my arsenal of great nonfiction writing, Oh, Rats!  It's a wonderful example of the type of mentorship we have to put in the hands and minds of our writers.  In fact, I ordered a copy before I left for home that afternoon... it's that good (as was this session)!
     I'm always on the lookout for examples of great nonfiction writing to share with learners.  And, Oh, Rats! is a marvelous resource about an often misunderstood rodent (which I learned, by the way, are able to claw straight up a brick wall, gnaw through iron and concrete, and climb up a drainpipe and live--thanks, Kate, the drawings you had us do in the session still haunt me).  Rats.  Compelling really, especially when you read this book.  My students were shocked about the real story about "Ring Around The Rosie"!  And, I guarantee you and your students will love this book.
     Two other Albert Marrin titles I found in my stacks were Little Monsters:  The Creatures That Live On Us and in Us and Saving the Buffalo.  Equally as well-written, equally as compelling.  Thanks to Chris and Kate, I've become an Albert Marrin fan!


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