5 OF MY FAVORITE NON-FICTION SERIES TO ENGAGE READERS

I love exploring non-fiction texts with my students!! Non-fiction can be fun, fascinating, and extremely engaging for students, especially when presented the right way. Unfortunately, as an upper grade teacher, many of the non-fiction texts that are "grade-level appropriate" for my students tend to lack such excitement, and although they might be rigorous, they can be somewhat daunting.

So when we first begin to explore non-fiction in my class, I love to find the perfect texts to pique their curiosity! I love texts that they are free to explore, and which keep them coming back for more!!



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Here are five of my favorite non-fiction series, along with activities to go with each! You can CLICK HERE to download all of the activities from this post.


These books are a ton of fun!! They explore interesting animal features and give students a glimpse of what it would be like if they had these features!! My students love learning about the hair, ears, teeth, and feet of different animals, and then pondering what it would be like to have these features themselves!! For these books, I ask students to pick one animal whose feature they would like to have. They draw a picture of what they would look like , and then tell about what life would be like with this feature. Of course, they need to use DETAILS from the text when completing their picture and explanation. These are great texts when teaching students to find important details to support their ideas.

Click on any of the affiliate links below to take a closer look at some of my favorites...



Who Would Win? is the perfect series to engage readers, and to focus on the TEXT STRUCTURE: COMPARE & CONTRAST. These books compare two species of predators in a variety of different ways, eventually giving readers the chance to decide "who would win"!! My students love to make PREDICTIONS about who they think would win, and then read to find out whether or not the EVIDENCE supports their predictions. For these books, I have students take notes along the way, as they read about the different features of each species. In the end, I have them use the evidence they collected to make a final decision about who they think would win!!

Click on any of the affiliate links below to take a closer look at some of my favorites...



The "You Wouldn't Want to Be" series are perfect for exploring history!! Each book focuses on what it was like to live during a specific historical event or time period! They are presented with a bit of humor, which my students always appreciate! These books are perfect for helping students come up with reasons for an OPINION ARGUMENT! The argument is right in the title, and students need to look for REASONS, DETAILS, and EXAMPLES to support that argument.

Click on any of the affiliate links below to take a closer look at some of my favorites...
 


This series of books really plays into students' natural curiosity about the world. It is perfect for ASKING and ANSWERING QUESTIONS. These books include a series of questions about a given topic, questions that a kid would ask!! Then those questions are answered in a way that is easy for students to understand. With this series, I ask students to choose 3 questions from the text, and to answer them in their own words. 

Click on any of the affiliate links below to take a closer look at some of my favorites...
  


Finally, you simply can't go wrong with National Geographic Kid's EVERYTHING books! These books are so much fun for students to explore. They are filled with so much color, detail, and TONS of TEXT FEATURES!! These books are perfect for teaching students about different text features, which is why I like to use them with a Text Features Scavenger Hunt. Students explore the books and find different features that help them to better understand the subject being explored!!

Click on any of the affiliate links below to take a closer look at some of my favorites...


There's no reason that non-fiction should not be a TON OF FUN for our students!!! These books are the perfect bridge toward helping students to be able to read, understand, and most importantly, LOVE reading non-fiction!!

CLICK HERE to download any of the activities from this post!!

Looking for more ideas for teaching non-fiction?!?!
Be sure to follow my Non-Fiction Board on Pinterest...

12 comments

  1. GREAT resources! Love the reminder about them!

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  2. Love this list and resources! Thank you so much for this awesome post!

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  3. Hello. Loved this blog post. I already have several books from the If I Had... series. What programs or software do you use to create your resources? Thank you.

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    1. Thank you for the kind feedback! I use powerpoint to create all of my printables!

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  4. Thank you so much for sharing this!
    I can't wait to enrich my classroom library. :)

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  5. These are great! Thanks for sharing!

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  6. Thank you for this post. I have been searching for mentor texts for my writer's workshop this new school year. I absolutely agree that there is no reason for non-fiction not to be exciting and full of enjoyment for student read and listen to.

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  7. I have been searching for mentor texts to use with my students as I introduce expository writing. I love the list you have compiled. The books seem to be very engaging and high student interest. I have found that some my students struggle with relating to expository texts and Inthink some of these title will really help.

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  8. fantastic! makes me want to go out and buy the ones i haven't heard of- i do love teaching with Nat Geo!!

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  9. Wonderful post! Thanks for your awesome ideas!

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  10. This is pretty much amazing. I'm a homeschooling parent and it would be easy enough for me to get a book or two from each series to have my children read. I really love the ideas here and the link to resources. Thank you very much!

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