Worlds of imagination by Sara B. Gauldin
Recently, I made a tough decision to expand on my current writing forte and add an element of nonfiction to my writing repertoire. Initially, I had never intended to dabble with this brand of writing, but I have found that there are a few select areas outside of writing that I have a substantial amount of background information in. The primary focus of this introductory nonfiction piece is to answer a question that I am asked very frequently as a mother of three and an elementary school teacher; “How can I teach my child to read?”
The truth is, there are clear and approachable steps that when repeated and used correctly are extremely effective in instilling literacy in even the wiggliest young child. At the same time, the question is not one I can answer within a few sentences, or a brief conversation. Teaching a child to read is an involved process that had many components that must be woven together before the tapestry of the effort can be revealed to be useful and effective.
The most challenging aspect of this genre is compiling and promoting access to the resources and methodology that I discuss in my manuscript. My goal is to provide free or inexpensive sources of materials that parents or educators can use with little or no preparation to provide extremely effective individualized instruction. Anybody in the education system realizes that the access to teaching resources in more valuable than all the curriculum planning in the world. After all, knowing what to teach is useless if you have nothing to teach it with.
As I have crafted my new project, I have uncovered a few truths to the nonfiction world.
-Nonfiction material has to be substantiated. I am qualified to write about the acquisition of literacy because I have a degree, a teacher’s license and eight school years worth of students with documented and marked improvements in reading. Writing about an area in which I have personal expertise gives me credibility. If I were to attempt a full report on the inner workings of the internal-combustion engine, I would be producing a work of research and would be unable to add my own insights from individual experience.
-Nonfiction materials must still maintain the craft of readability and word usage that is essential in all writing. In other words, the obligation to produce the same quality word usage is not diminished by the transition to a more technical genre.
-Writing nonfiction does not preclude me from continuing to produce works of fiction. In fact, my new novel, The Corporeal Pull is coming along quite well!
-Instructional nonfiction does not work well with the same formatting settings as fiction. Word has had to undergo a facelift in terms of setting up the styles that will eventually be the glue that keeps my published work form turning into a digital word scrap pile. When factual information is delivered the data needs to be broken down into digestible chunks rather than extended chapters.
As I have delved into my little project, I have felt a sense of accomplishment at the prospect of helping parents contribute to their children’s literacy. I personally have facilitated the advancement of literacy in the lives of more than 200 students. As an author, I have to admit that teaching others to read is helping to propagate my own craft, but it is also an accomplishment to be proud of!
Don’t miss Sara B. Gauldin’s amazing books! Click HERE!
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