Mentor Text Review: Luke’s Way of Looking

6+1 traits narrative mentor text
  • Author: Nadia Wheatley
  • Illustrator: Matt Ottley
  • Publisher: Walker Books Australia

Luke’s Way of Looking is a wonderful story about celebrating and embracing difference. It’s about helping people to see there is more than one way to look at the world (and that’s a good thing!) Matt Ottley’s illustrations are gorgeous and really add to the text in this book.

Suggestions For Using This Mentor Text To Teach Writing:

Nadia Whatley’s text follows a familiar ‘someone wanted…but…so…’ storyline (ORGANISATION) and has a lovely rounded resolution. The lead is an example of immediate ‘othering’ to develop interest in the main character (‘All the boys saw things the same way…except for Luke’).

It would be useful for demonstrating sentence variety (SENTENCE FLUENCY) as it contains numerous sentence of varying lengths (one sentence even has 32 words in it!) It also contains a range of simple, compound and complex sentences. It would make a great mentor for the dependent clause + independent clause structure of complex sentences (‘When Mr B told the class X, Luke did Y’).

A study of CONVENTIONS would be possible too (especially the role of the commas in complex sentences).

Suggestions For Using This Mentor Text To Teach Reading:

MAKING CONNECTIONS: Students could discuss the idea of being unique- how are they similar to others and what makes them unique? What other books have you read where a character has unique characteristics? How does that help you better understand this book?

PREDICTING: Using the connections you have made to other books/characters, how does that help you to make a prediction about this book?

INFERRING: Look at the figurative language in this text- what does it mean? How do you know? (eg. ‘He could burst with happiness’ ‘he found himself flying out into the sunshine’).

QUESTIONING: List the questions that pop into your head before, during and after reading this book.

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