An exploration of the affordances of mentor texts
Everyday texts and Japanese sixth grade writing curriculum
Keywords:WRITING INSTRUCTION, MENTOR TEXTS, JAPANESE, CRITICAL LITERACY, MULTIMODAL, JAPAN
The purpose of this study was to explore writing in sixth-grade textbooks in Japan and the affordances of contemporary everyday texts to be used alongside textbooks as mentor texts for writing. Mentor texts are often used in writing instruction; however, their affordances have not been well-researched. Considering that Japanese teachers modify textbook lessons with other materials, we sought out everyday adult and children’s texts found in newsstands, bookstores, convenience stores, internet sources, and libraries that shared some features with textbook genres of writing. Textbook lessons and everyday texts were analyzed using concepts from social semiotics to discover their organization, producer, user, design, layout and multimodal elements. The affordances of textbook lessons and everyday texts functioning as material resources are developed in this paper through three focal genres, poetry, informative, and persuasive writing.
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