Nate the Great Book Series

If your first and second graders are ready to dive into the mystery genre, you need to check out the Nate the Great series written by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat. These books are a little shorter than the typical chapter book (most are around 50 pages in length) and they include many illustrations that will keep your students turning the pages. Some of the books have been broken down into chapters, while others read as a short story.

So now that you've grabbed some Nate the Great books, keep reading to find three ways to use these books with students.

 My students have always loved flip books, so it only made sense to create one for this book series. The flip book has seven pages:

Students can complete the pages during or after reading a text. They will focus on the setting, problem & solution, how Nate's friends help provide clues and information to solve the case, a summary of the story, identifying their favorite part, and giving a book review.

Here's a closer look at the page, A Friendly Investigation, where students identify how the other characters in the text help Nate solve the mystery. Rosamond, Annie, and Fang make an appearance in most of the books, but the third character who helps Nate often changes. For the books where Rosamond and Annie don't help Nate as much, there is another option where all three character spots are left blank. 

Another way to engage your Nate the Great readers is to create a detective's case file, which doubles as a reading response booklet.

There are pre-made reading response templates that match the flip book shown above. There are also open-ended pages (lined, blank, and a picture/writing combination page). These open-ended pages work great for vocabulary, making connections, asking questions, visualizations, and more! You can even combine the two options:

If you're planning to use the Nate the Great books with your guided reading group or with your book club, creating a reading response journal is a great way to keep all of the student materials in one place. These book companions contain comprehension questions to guide your readers, vocabulary words, and a handful of graphic organizers.

You can find all of these Nate the Great resources here.
You can also find two free downloads from Random House here and here.

Happy Reading!

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