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By Lizzy Courtney

Use a fun story as a starting point for activities about genre, diaries and story settings.

Fiction and non-fiction

Begin by defining fiction and non-fiction. Talk about the differences between story and information books and look at the layouts of the two genres. Try and find good examples of a non-fiction page that incorporates diagrams, photos, labels and captions. You could go on to incorporate this into a numeracy or ICT lesson on data handling by allowing the children to investigate a selection of books and then sorting them into fiction and non-fiction sets, or organising a survey of the most popular books and using this information to make a tally chart or a bar chart.

Encourage the children to explain their choices and their decisions about the genre of the books. Front covers often hint at whether a text is fiction or non-fiction, but point out that you can’t always judge a book by its cover – as an example, try and find a non-fiction book with a cartoon or illustration on its cover.

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