Writing Tools

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Janine Reid and Betty Schultze wrote a great resource to support early writers. While attending a workshop that Betty was facilitating I drew copies of her student examples that depict the beginning stages of writing. Here they are for you to download:


10 Things Every Writer Needs to Know
Author: Jeff Anderson
Format: Paperback
  • Whether writing a blog entry or a high-stakes essay, fiction or nonfiction, short story or argument, students need to know certain essentials in order to write effectively. This straightforward book focuses on developing concepts and application of ten key aspects of good writing -- motio, models, focus, detail, form, frames, cohesion, energy, words, and clutter. It provides dozens of strong model texts, both fiction and nonfiction, that will help young writers learn what is possible, and experiment with the strategies professional writers use. The book also provides mini-lessons, mentor texts, writing process strategies, and classroom tips that will motivate students to confidently and competently take on any writing task.

    Coming in October 2011!

$32.95

In Re-Print
Basic Tools for Beginning Writers
Author: Betty Schultze
Format: Paperback
  • How to teach all the skills beginning writers need--from alphabet recognition and spelling to strategies for self-editing and building coherent text

    How to teach all the skills beginning writers need - from alphabet recognition and spelling to strategies for self-editing and building coherent text. Offers teachers strategies for helping children grasp the pencil, print legibly, spell, punctuate, and create sentences that contain complete thoughts and link together logically. Includes background information, lesson ideas, and suggestions for student review, extensions, and modifications that lead to best practices in developing writing consistency.

    (Companion to What's Next for this Beginning Writer.)

$24.95

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Burning Brightly
Author: Kay Stone
Format: Paperback
  • Burning Brightly is the first full-length book treatment of professional storytelling in North America today. For some years there has been a major storytelling revival throughout the continent, with hundreds of local groups and centres springing up, and with storytelling becoming an important part of the professional training for librarians.

    In the book, Stone explores storytelling through storytellers themselves, while providing enlightening commentary from her own background as a storyteller. Included in her analysis are informative discussions of organized storytelling communities, individual tellers, and tales. Issues such as the modern recontextualization of old tales and the role of women in folktales are linked to individual storytelling accounts. Texts of eight stories that exemplify the approaches of the various storytellers are also included.

    Burning Brightly will be compelling reading for storytellers—and for everyone who loves storytelling.

    Only 2 copies available.

$22.00

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Defying Maliseet Language Death: Emergent Vitalities of Language, Culture, and Identity in Eastern Canada
Format: Hardcover
  • Published through the Recovering Languages and Literacies of the Americas initiative, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
    Today, indigenous communities throughout North America are grappling with the dual issues of language loss and revitalization. While many communities are making efforts to bring their traditional languages back through educational programs, for some communities these efforts are not enough or have come too late to stem the tide of language death, which occurs when there are no remaining fluent speakers and the language is no longer used in regular communication. The Maliseet language, as spoken in the Tobique First Nation of New Brunswick, Canada, is one such endangered language that will either be revitalized and survive or will die off.
    Defying Maliseet Language Death is an ethnographic study by Bernard C. Perley, a member of this First Nation, that examines the role of the Maliseet language and its survival in Maliseet identity processes. Perley examines what is being done to keep the Maliseet language alive, who is actively involved in these processes, and how these two factors combine to promote Maliseet language survival. He also explores questions of identity, asking the important question: “If Maliseet is no longer spoken, are we still Maliseet?” This timely volume joins the dual issues of language survival and indigenous identity to present a unique perspective on the place of language within culture.

$68.95

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Dictionary of Word Origins: The Histories of More Than 8,000 English-Language Words
Author: John Ayto
Format: Paperback
  • What is the link between map and apron, acrobat and oxygen, zeal and jealousy, flour and pollen, secret and crime? Did you know that crimson originally comes from the name of tiny scale insects, the kermes, from whose dried bodies a red dyestuff is made? That Yankee began as a nickname for Dutchmen? That omelette evolved from amulette, a thin sheet of metal, and is a not-too- distant cousin of the word laminate? That jeans find their antecedent in jean fustian, meaning a cotton fabric from Genoa? The Dictionary of Word Origins uncovers the hidden and often surprising connection between words. Written in a clear and informative style, the more than 8,000 articles reveal the origins of and links between some of the most common English-language words. They also contain an extensive selection of words whose life histories are intrinsically fascinating or instructive. This dictionary shows how modern English has developed from its Indo-European roots and how the various influences on the language from migration and invasion to exploration, trade, technology, and scholarship have intermingled. It is an invaluable addition to any English or linguistics library.

$19.95

In Re-Print
Feathers of Freedom
Author: Sharon Bannon
Format: Paperback
  • Reading and writing are tools that can empower your mind and your life. They can help you become independent and self-reliant. The learning materials in Feathers of Freedom consist of legends and their teachings. There are also short biographies of some dynamic Aboriginal people that have helped to make our lives better.

    Good writing skills help you to convey your thoughts much clearer and will give more meaning to your writing.



    Embracing the holistic approach to literacy, this workbook incorporates spiritual teachings with reading and writing fundamentals and exercises.

    This literacy workbook focuses on issues and concerns that may be relevant to Aboriginal inmates and parolees of correctional institutions.

$15.95

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From the Iron House: Imprisonment in First Nations Writing
Author: Deena Rymhs
Format: Hardcover
  • In From the Iron House: Imprisonment in First Nations Writing, Deena Rymhs identifies continuities between the residential school and the prison, offering ways of reading “the carceral”—that is, the different ways that incarceration is constituted and articulated in contemporary Aboriginal literature. Addressing the work of writers like Tomson Highway and Basil Johnston along with that of lesser-known authors writing in prison serials and underground publications, this book emphasizes the literary and political strategies these authors use to resist the containment of their institutions.

    The first part of the book considers a diverse sample of writing from prison serials, prisoners’ anthologies, and individual autobiographies, including Stolen Life by Rudy Wiebe and Yvonne Johnson, to show how these works serve as second hearings for their authors—an opportunity to respond to the law’s authority over their personal and public identities while making a plea to a wider audience. The second part looks at residential school narratives and shows how the authors construct identities for themselves in ways that defy the institution’s control. The interactions between these two bodies of writing—residential school accounts and prison narratives—invite recognition of the ways that guilt is colonially constructed and how these authors use their writing to distance themselves from that guilt.

    Offering new ways of reading Native writing, From the Iron House is a pioneering study of prison literature in Canada and situates its readings within international criticism of prison writing. Contributing to genre studies and theoretical understandings of life writing, and covering a variety of social topics, this work will be relevant to readers interested in indigenous studies, Canadian cultural studies, postcolonial studies, auto/biography studies, law, and public policy.

$65.00

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Great Writers from our First Nations
Author: Kim Sigafus
Format: Paperback
  • A celebration of ten writers who have challenged stereotypes, told history from a perspective often silenced, and entertained millions of readers.

    Included is author Louise Erdrich, whose novel Love Medicine was the first in an award-winning series about the lives of several generations of Ojibwa families. Sherman Alexie, author of the semi-autobiographical The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, went on to win the National Book Award. Tomson Highway broke new ground with his play The Rez Sisters. Joseph Boyden based his novel Three Day Road in part on his grandfather’s experience fighting in the First World War. N. Scott Momaday re-wrote the history of the American West with his book House Made of Dawn. Nicola Campbell drew on her family’s experience of residential schools to write the children’s books Shi-shi-etko and Shin-chi’s Canoe. Also included are Marilyn Dumont (A Really Good Brown Girl), Tim Tingle (Walking the Choctaw Road), Joseph Bruchac (Buffalo Song), and Maria Campbell (Half-breed).



    The full list of writers profiled:

    • Sherman Alexie (Spokane/Coeur d’Alene, Washington) - The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
    • Louise Erdrich (Ojibwa, North Dakota) - Love Medicine (the Argus Series)
    • Joseph Boyden (Cree/Métis, Ontario) - Three Day Road
    • N. Scott Momaday (Kiowa/Cherokee, Oklahoma) - House Made of Dawn
    • Marilyn Dumont (Cree/Métis, Alberta) - A Really Good Brown Girl
    • Tomson Highway (Cree, Manitoba) - The Rez Sisters
    • Joseph Bruchac (Abenaki, New York State) - Buffalo Song
    • Maria Campbell (Métis, Saskatchewan) - Halfbreed
    • Nicola Campbell (Interior Salish/Metis, Alberta) - Shin-chi’s Canoe
    • Tim Tingle (Choctaw, Texas) - Walking the Choctaw Road

$10.95

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How To Tell a Legend
Author: Janet Stone
Format: Paperback
  • A legend is a story about a hero, a people, or a natural phenomena. Popular legends include King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, Blackbeard, and Robin Hood. This exciting new title teaches readers about the common characteristics found in legends from around the world. Engaging writing activities guide readers as they use these characteristics to create their own legends.

$9.95

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How To Tell a Myth
Author: Robert Walker
Format: Paperback
  • A myth is a story that attempts to explain a natural phenomena—such as how the world was created. Myths often include supernatural characters who have extraordinary powers. How To Tell a Myth is an engaging title that introduces readers to myths from around the world and highlights the common elements that make up this genre. Step-by-step instructions help readers create their own myths.

$9.95

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Indigenous Storywork
Format: Paperback
  • Jo-ann Archibald worked closely with Coast Salish Elders and storytellers, who shared both traditional and personal life-experience stories, in order to develop ways of bringing storytelling into educational contexts. Indigenous Storywork is the result of this research and it demonstrates how stories have the power to educate and heal the heart, mind, body, and spirit. It builds on the seven principles of respect, responsibility, reciprocity, reverence, holism, interrelatedness, and synergy that form a framework for understanding the characteristics of stories, appreciating the process of storytelling, establishing a receptive learning context, and engaging in holistic meaning-making.

$43.95

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Maria Campbell: Essays on Her Works
Format: Paperback
  • This essay collection gathers together writings on the works of Maria Campbell, feminist, activist, visionary, artist, mother, grandmother, and Métis elder. The book talks truthfully of Maria's journey as a writer, how her writing was infected with her experiences with marginalization and discrimination. And how she emerged on the other side having affirmed her identity.

$20.00

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Real Revision
Author: Kate Messner
Format: Paperback
  • Authors' strategies to share with student writers

    Real Revision demystifies the revision process for teachers and students alike and provides tried-and-true revision strategies, field-tested by more than thirty of students' favourite authors. This unique book illustrates:
    how authors use research, brainstorming, and planning as revision tools how they revise to add detail and make characters stronger how students can use those same techniques for all kinds of writing in the classroom

    The book features dozens of reproducible "mentor author" pages with quotes from authors about their revision processes, and includes related classroom-ready activities.

$27.95

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Roots of Survival
Author: Joseph Bruchac
Format: Paperback
  • As the preeminent Native American storyteller today, Joseph Bruchac has helped to bring the wisdom of Native stories to a widespread audience. Here for the first time he offers his thoughts on the power of these stories, how they have influenced his own life, and how they may help us navigate with hope into the coming century.

$27.50

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Story Keepers: Conversations with Aboriginal Writers
Author: Jennifer David
Format: Paperback
  • Today, First Nation, Métis and Inuit writers are transforming a strong oral storytelling tradition into a written one. They are the Story Keepers.

    Discover the works and words of ten contemporary writers from across Canada. Meet Jeanette Armstrong, Louise Halfe, Maria Campbell, Drew Hayden Taylor, Basil Johnston, Ruby Slipperjack-Farell, Gregory Scofield, Armand Ruffo, Richard Van Camp and Lee Maracle. Enter the world of indigenous literature through the eyes of these ten story keepers.

$22.95

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