3 Tips for Helping your Students Connect with Authors

We all know that early childhood learners are developing their print awareness. They start to understand that letters represent spoken words and that those words can be put together to make a book that tells a good story. We teach them to read left to right and from top to bottom. We teach them how to use the illustrations and find context clues.

However, one thing that is sometimes forgotten, is to teach students that the author is, in fact, a REAL PERSON. It just really blows me away when a student sees a photograph of an author and they realize "Hey, that's a real person". I feel like this is such an important step not only in reading, but in writing as well. When students connect with their favorite authors, they can start to envision themselves as authors as well!

Here are a few quick tips for creating readers for life.

Tip #1: Author Photographs

Need a quick and cute bulletin board idea? Why not showcase your class' favorite authors?


This is one of my favorite spots in my classroom! Students are so intrigued when they see the author's photograph. I keep baskets filled with books from those authors right underneath the bulletin board so that students can easily browse and read books from our favorite authors!


Tip #2: Author's Purpose

When teaching author's purpose, you can make it really personal for the student by saying "Why do you think Eric Carle wrote this book for you to read?" Then you can reverse that question when teaching your students to write by saying "Why would you want someone to read this story? Do you want them to laugh? Do you want them to learn something? Do you want to persuade them to do something?


Tip #3: Scholastic Authors Studies

Want to take it just a few steps further? Scholastic offers author study ideas on their website. You can find them {here}. These great lesson ideas tell you which TEKS/skills you can target, what materials you will need and how to conduct your lesson. These author studies are a great way of showcasing what makes each author different, which is an important step in helping students discover their favorite authors. The best part about these author studies... NO WORKSHEETS NEEDED!


What strategies do you have for helping your students connect with authors? Let me know in the comments below!

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