Mentor Text Review: Why I Love Australia

  • Author and illustrator: Bronwyn Bancroft
  • Publisher: Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing

In Why I Love Australia, Indigenous Australian author/illustrator Bronwyn Bancroft has created a beautiful book listing the various things she loves about Australia. This is a masterclass in how writers notice the world around them.

Suggestions For Using This Mentor Text To Teach Writing:

If you are looking to develop more descriptive student writing (IDEAS) through the use of striking WORD CHOICE, then this is the book for you. The sentences ebb and flow, just like the ‘swaying tentacles of watery light in a coral leaf’ in the text (SENTENCE FLUENCY). This text would be a great model text for teaching students about noun group phrases (eg. ‘floating fields of billowing grasslands’).

Bancroft has modelled the use of simile, metaphor and alliteration and shown readers how to use just the right amount of these ingredients (without going over the top and spoiling their effect). In addition to the rich vocabulary and wonderfully descriptive writing, the images in this text are fabulous as well.

IDEAS- Bancroft models how writers pay attention to the world around them- how they look and then look deeper to see all the tiny working parts and fascinating details. Students could go outside the classroom and sit and notice the tiny things in the world around them. What do they see? Hear? Feel? Look deeper!

Suggestions For Using This Mentor Text To Teach Reading:

This book is an ideal text to model sentence fluency on the ear. It is rhythmic and poetic. INFERRING: Look at some of the figurative language in this text and ask students to discuss the potential meanings. What does ‘suburban homes that chatter under a patchwork of rooftops’ mean to you? What does it look and sound like in your head? Why might they be ‘chatting’?

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