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Nonfiction Matters
Inside Nonfiction Matters

Good Work You All Are Doing

Updates On People and Themes We’ve Discussed

I continue to be impressed by the work you all are doing and telling me about — here are two great examples. 


Sandhya Nankani’s curriculum guide to go with the oral history of Muslim young people created by the Student Press Initiative is now available as a free download. Guide on the web:

Guide in print:

Sandhya’s website:

Deb Hanson reports both good news and new challenges in the Guys Read group: 
The Guys Read mentors all met with me on Monday to discuss the progress of the club and next steps. The good news is that we’re seeing many of the boys express appreciation for the club and the mentoring they are getting from the men. I’m also getting informal feedback from some reading teachers that their GuysRead boys are now reading more than other boys (and some girls) in their classes. We are getting requests from other boys to join the group.

The downside is that some of the boys have been coming to the meetings late (enjoying the benefits of free food and social time) but not participating as much and some are continuing to be negative leaders in classes. We also feel like we are not getting in as much reading as we’d like with them.

The men decided to do three new things: 1) each adult mentor will now choose three of the boys to mentor more closely, meet with in small groups, and lead discussions with each week (in addition to some whole group activity) , 2) do short read-alouds of portions of books and magazines at each meeting to try to generate interest in some books, and 3)  allow each boy to select a book to read on his own and ask them to report back to the small group about the book each week (we will provide a set of books they can select that match their interests and reading levels).  They thought that having the boys "assigned" to a single mentor might help them both keep track of the boys’ progress and behaviors outside the club, and would provide a smaller, safer setting to talk about the reading they are doing. They want the boys to have a "go-to" adult if they need to talk about anything going on at school or home.

We finally got our first copies of ESPN RISE magazine yesterday and a local high school baseball player is right on the cover… The mentors want to use articles from this magazine at the next meeting. They had a great trip to the local college basketball game and have scored tickets to the local ECHL Hockey game for later in March. The boys who get to the meetings on time, demonstrate positive attitudes, and contribute to the reading discussions will earn the right to attend.


  1. DEBRA HANSON says:

    Marc – this post looks fine in Firefox. Only in IE does it show this big gap. Also, you can use to shorten lengthy URLs in posts – it’s a beautiful liitle tool.

  2. Marc Aronson says:

    Deb: I have seen mention of tinyurl but I’ve never used it, next time I will. There is a function I use when I blog that is supposed to do something similar, but I guess it did not work.