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Literature: Genres in Children's and Young Adult Literature

Learn about the genres of literature. These sites are about the genres in children’s and young adult literature: poetry and verse, folklore, fantasy, science fiction, contemporary realistic fiction, historical fiction, biography and nonfiction. A variety of lesson plans and writing activities to teach genres in literature are given. Project activities as an alternative to the traditional book report and creating a personal database are included. eThemes Resources on these genres are included.


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Use this article about genres to promote reading a variety of books. The link to "Recommended Books for Kids" leads to printable lists of books in many topics and genres. This article is available in Spanish.
This brief article contains the value of having students read widely and provides a "Genre Pintrest Board" to track genre reading.
This article explains how to teach children to write informational text by using focused read-alouds which include discussions of the elements of information book genre. Examples of children's work are provided.
In this activity, students work together to learn about the fairy tale genre. Next they use their findings to create a version of a new tale. The new work is published to share or perform with classmates.
In this on-going activity, students are taught about genres in literature and are assigned one genre to research. Next they create a printable bookmark to record their findings. Lastly, students share their findings through book reviews with classmates.
This project involves students in creating personalized databases of book titles which they have read. Students could be required to place books in genre categories. A final presentation involves dressing as a character from one of the books and playing "guess the database" owner.
In this lesson, students research different genres and then compare a movie and novel version of the same story. Students learn that the same story can appear in various genres. Handouts and complete lesson available in "Supporting Files".
Use this project for an alternative to the traditional book report. Additional "book report" projects are given.
This lesson equips students to evaluate biographies. The WebQuest format is used and gives students tools to evaluate a quality biography by making decisions about including people in "Meet Famous Americans" site.
This lesson invites students to create Meg's journey in "A Wrinkle in Time" as a board game. Students may want to create board games as part of a final project for a fantasy or science fiction novel.
This lesson teaches about Hans Christian Andersen and famous characters from his tales. Tales include: The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling, The Emperor's New Clothes, The Little Match Girl, and The Darning Needle. Extension activities are given.
This site provides recommended poets and collections of poetry. In addition, there are videos of poetry being read and articles about children's poetry.
This site provides many links for using the Cinderella fairy tale.
In this activity, students learn about the various types of writing and subject area content which can be found in any genre.
Read online Cinderella stories from around the world. Includes the Chinese, Romanian, English, Scottish, and Native American versions. There are handouts and lesson plans for studying Cinderella tales and comparing the similarities and differences of each.
This is a collection of literature sites with online tall tales from America. Includes tall tales and information about Paul Bunyan, Davy Crockett, John Henry, and Slue-Foot Sue. Learn what tall tales are and their common characteristics.
Learn about science fiction and the real science behind it. Find out how fiction follows a scientific thought and creates a future that sometimes becomes a reality. Learn what the fiction and facts are today. Discover the science of cryonics, the laws of thermodynamics, warp and FTL (Faster Than Light) drives, artificial gravity, holograms, and more. Learn about the bad and good science in novels and movies. Includes lists of top classic movies, suggested sci-fi literature, lesson plans, and more.
These sites are about the genre of science fiction writing. Includes reading lists of recommended books for children.
These sites are about the genre of mysteries. Includes activities for writing mystery stories and samples of stories written by students.
Learn more about the genre of historical fiction. There are definitions and listings of recommended children's books, plus lesson plans and classroom activities.
Learn about realistic fiction, a genre of writing that has situations that could occur in real life. These sites include lists of books that fit into this category and a list of realistic fiction authors. There are also writing prompts to help students write their own realistic fiction stories.
These sites provide examples of different forms of poetry written for kids. Includes haiku, acrostic, concrete, limerick, free verse, couplet, and cinquain. Students can read the examples and then create their own original poetry.
This resource is a compilation of booklist web sites for elementary school students. The lists were compiled by teachers, librarians, and students. Some of the lists are divided by grade level, readability, or genre.
Read all about different mystery books and their authors. Books include "Who Stole the Wizard of Oz," "Encyclopedia Brown," the "Cam Jensen Mystery" series, "The Hardy Boys," "Nancy Drew", and "Bunniculla." Includes classroom activity ideas and some interactive quizzes.

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