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Sat, Mar 20



PB&J: Shaking Things Up

Join me as we unpack Shaking Things Up to look for all the reading, writing, and language standards hidden within this picture book. Learn how to turn your favorite picture book into phenomenal reading and writing mini-lessons.

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PB&J: Shaking Things Up
PB&J: Shaking Things Up

Time & Location

Mar 20, 2021, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM EDT



About The Event

The purpose of this PD is to unpack all the possible teaching points contained within one title. This book was chosen because it's loaded with ELA skills from the reading, writing, language, phonics, phonemic awareness and fluency standards AND selecting an ideal mentor sentence from the text for a grammar & conventions study. 

In the two hours, we will walk through the book, page by page, discussing literacy elements, conventions used by the author and illustrator, vocabulary words & phrases, sentence structure, figurative language, plot, punctuation and more. We will identify the spots in the book that would be ideal stopping spots to demonstrate reading strategies that readers do.  

As teachers, we all love picture books, and if you were a teacher at Jen Jones Elementary, you'd be reading your students 5-6 read-alouds a day as there are miles of positive benefits to reading aloud to children. But some books are not only ideal for read-alouds where the focus is the STORY, but some books we use as read-alouds are ALSO ideal to take one step further, and be used as a mentor text. A mentor text is called such because it's a text where reading can infer, predict, summarize, etc. or where writers can "try on" the writing techniques used in the book by the author. In a true reading or writing minilesson, the teacher does not read or reread the entire book during the minilesson (there's no way you can and call it mini), but pick certain spots in the book to demonstrate and invite students to try the strategy as readers or writers.  

While we will uncover 20+ teaching points for each book, I would not and I do not suggest you teach all the teaching points in one title in one day/week (I will discuss more on this in the PD). The intent is to read the picture book aloud to your students first before using it as a mentor text. Using the book as a mentor text means you are using the book during your reading or writing strategy minilesson to teach one skill and strategy that readers or writers use to make meaning. While we will discover 20+ teaching points for each book, they should be taught one at a time and the others should go into your "teaching bank" to be taught later on in the week, month or year. 

This PD will equip you with the skills and know-how of finding and teaching skills and strategies from picture books when reading and writing strategies students need are not provided for you. For example, a lot of schools and districts are provided with reading and writing units of study, or many schools and teachers use the Reading and Writing Strategies Book, however neither of these resources are all comprehensive. So now, when a strategy for a reading or writing minilesson does not exist, you will have the power to create one because you have completed this PD, core to a balanced literacy teacher's skills and core to any school that believes in literature based literacy instruction. Like Ruth Calhoun says, "we must recognize that the very best resources for teaching reading and writing are not found in worksheets or test-prep programs, but found in the picture books we love." I could not agree with the more. 

The protocol that we will follow to find the teaching points is scalable in that you will be able to do this on your own with any book after the PD, or teach other teachers how to unpack a picture book. 

The book for this PD is not included in the price of this PD. You must secure a copy of the book prior to attending the event AND read it at least once. 

Purchase the book here.

The Zoom code will be emailed to attendees the night before the event.  The link to the recording and your PD certificate will be emailed to you after the event. Thank you for maintaining professional integrity by watching alone if you purchase a single user ticket.  If for some reason, you miss or cannot attend the live event, you will have access to the recording after the live event has ended. 

If you are registering multiple people, please email their names and email addresses to

Please pay via PayPal or credit card for single users or groups less than 20. If you are registering a group larger than 20 people and need to pay via purchase order, please email If your ticket is not paid for by the night before the event, the Zoom code and password will not be sent to you.

For any questions and for more details, email


  • Live Zoom + Recording

    Single user only. Zoom link will be emailed to you before the event and recording will be emailed to you after the event.




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