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January 25

NCTE's Orbis Pictus Nonfiction Award is announced today.

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NCTE's Orbis Pictus Nonfiction Award is announced today.

Grades 3 – 12
Calendar Activity Type Literacy-Related Event

 

EVENT DESCRIPTION

 

 

In 1990, NCTE established an annual award for promoting and recognizing excellence in the writing of nonfiction for children in grades K-8. The name Orbis Pictus commemorates the work of Johannes Amos Comenius, whose Orbis Pictus-The World in Pictures (1657) is considered to be the first children's picture book. One title is selected for the award each November at the Annual NCTE Convention, and as many as five Honor Books are also recognized.

CLASSROOM ACTIVITY

 

 

Have your students conduct research and write original works of nonfiction on topics of their choice. Students may wish to work collaboratively on this project as coauthors or author-illustrator teams.

  • First, have students brainstorm possible topics individually or in small groups.

  • After each student or team has selected a topic, have them conduct research using appropriate Orbis Pictus Award-winners, Internet resources, and other reference sources.

  • Have students plan and write informational picture books, biographies, or other works of nonfiction. You may wish to have students use the ReadWriteThink Flip Book to help them organize their information.  More tips are available for use with the Flip Book.

Explore the Three Ways to Bind a Handmade Book printout, and consider laminating book pages for durability. Then add your students' finished works to your classroom library for all to learn from and enjoy.

WEBSITES

 

 
  • NCTE Orbis Pictus Nonfiction Award

    The National Council of Teachers of English provides information on the annual Orbis Pictus Award, including its history, selection criteria, and nomination procedures.

  • The Significance of Topics of Orbis Pictus Award-Winning Books

    This sample chapter from the NCTE text The Best in Children's Nonfiction explores the elements that come into play as the committee chooses the winner.

  • Orbis sensualium pictus

    This page, from the State Library of South Australia, offers information about Johannes Amos Comenius and his illustrated Latin primer for which the Orbis Pictus award is named. Additional links and an image from the book are also included.

RELATED RESOURCES

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Nonfiction Inquiry: Using Real Reading and Writing to Explore the World

Grades   K – 8  |  Professional Library  |  Journal

Nonfiction Inquiry: Using Real Reading and Writing to Explore the World

Nonfiction is the genre most likely to spur children’s passion and wonder for learning. This article discusses way to motivate children to read nonfiction.

 

Reading and Writing Nonfiction Genres

Grades   3 – 5  |  Professional Library  |  Book

Reading and Writing Nonfiction Genres

This practical, hands-on text shows how to teach nonfiction to elementary students.