NDSU Distance & Continuing Education (DCE)

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K-12 Professionals

Teaching Nonfiction Writing

EDUC 600




Instructor: Judy Kvaale

Grading: Letter

Monday, August 25, 2014 - Friday, December 19, 2014

Instruction Mode: Internet-Asynchronous (Online Class)

Academic Level: K-12 Professional Development

NDSU Credit Fee: $350

Class Offered Through eEducators

Course Description:

Research supports the importance of teaching students to write nonfiction, yet 95% of writing in K-3 classrooms is personal narrative and fiction. Nonfiction writing is much more than writing personal narratives. In this course participants will be introduced to authentic forms of nonfiction writing such as, Instructional Writing, Descriptive Reports, Scientific Explanations, Persuasive Writing and Nonfiction Narrative, along with learning a step-by-step process on how to teach each form. The course also addresses conventional spelling, assessment strategies, students' "sense of voice", whole-class, small group, and individual support and how to help children locate, interpret, record, publish and share information.


As a result of this participation in this course, students should:

1.  Formulate a research-based rationale for teaching nonfiction writing. (synthesis)

2.  Identify and understand the four major considerations (locate, interpret, record, and publish and share information) to help children become researchers. (application, knowledge)

3.  Recognize stages students go through to become conventional spellers. (analysis)

4.  Understand the components of instructional writing, descriptive reports, scientific explanations, persuasive writing and nonfiction narrative. (comprehension)

5.  Design lesson plans for instructional writing, descriptive reports, scientific explanations, persuasive writing and nonfiction narrative. (synthesis)

6.  Evaluate and design assessments for various forms of nonfiction writing (evaluation, synthesis)

7.  Understand ways to provide whole-class, small-group, and individual support. (comprehension)

8.  Select standards that align with various nonfiction writing activities (evaluation)


The required reading is found in 1 text and a collection of web sites:

Stead, Tony (2002) Is That a Fact? Teaching Nonfiction Writing K-3. Portland, Maine: Stenhouse.

About The Instructor

Judy Kvaale
Judy Kvaale

Judy Kvaale earned an M.S. in Elementary Education from Minot State University. Judy also earned a B.A. in Elementary Education, with a minor in reading. Judy has over 35 years of experience as a third grade teacher as well as experience instructing graduate classes and adult education. Judy also received the West Fargo Chamber of Commerce Teacher of the Month award.

**Registration Instructions:

A minimum $20 processing fee will be assessed per person for cancellations received after the start of the course. Refunds are not issued after the start of the course or after access to the course has been provided.

**Register Now