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Free Lesson Activity: National Non-Fiction November

This month is the perfect time for teachers of all subjects to celebrate the wealth of non-fiction texts for all that they bring to student learning and independence. That’s why we’ve created a fully adaptable activity you can use with your students.

1. Each student has a topic

This could be anything from the Jacobeans to the double helix. They could choose from a subject-specific list based on what you’re teaching at the moment, or it could just be anything that interests them. You could also have everyone in class use the same topic.

Bonus: Have students explore topics related to this year’s theme: communication

2. Spin the wheel to pick a non-fiction genre

Here’s a wheel we’ve created with different non-fiction genres, which you’re welcome to edit. You can share the link with your students, or pick names and spin the wheel at the front of the classroom. Either way, each student should have their own non-fiction genre.

3. Students find their non-fiction texts

Each student must find a text relating to their topic that fits their assigned non-fiction genre. Some combinations might be challenging! It’s a great way to build students’ independent research skills. This could be a homework task, or you could even schedule a lesson in the library or computer lab to teach students about finding and evaluating sources critically.

4. Students read their non-fiction texts and report back

Once students have found their texts, they need to read them carefully and take notes. This includes what they’ve learned about the topic, but also how the type of source influenced the way the information is presented to them. We’ve created an adaptable worksheet to help with this.

Non-Fiction November worksheet

5. Students share what they’ve learned with others

This could be part of a lesson starter, a think-pair-share or even a formal presentation. There are no right or wrong answers; the point is that everyone has explored, learned and reflected.

If you use this activity with your classes, be sure to let us know how it went! Email us at support@educake.co.uk or tweet us @Educake.