After This Lesson…



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  • Part 1:
  • Fiction
  • and
  • Non-Fiction

After This Lesson…

  • Students will classify a literary work as a specific genre by applying context clues and justify their reasoning by citing evidence.

What is a Genre?

  • Genres are categories that all written materials fit into based on common structures and themes.
  • There are five main genres of literature:
      • Fiction
      • Nonfiction
      • Drama
      • Folklore
      • Poetry

Genre: Fiction

What is Fiction?

  • Fiction is anything that did not happen in real life.
  • There are four subgenres of fiction:
  • Hello There!

Subgenre: Historical Fiction

  • Set in the past (history)
  • Involves real people or historical events
  • The story itself never happened – is made up by the author
  • Scott O’Dell Award

Historical Fiction Examples

  • Novels about wars – Civil War, WWI, WWII, etc.
  • Novels about epidemics –yellow fever, Spanish influenza, etc.
  • Novels about tragedies – Titanic, aftermath of nuclear bombing
  • Dear America Books
  • Journal Format
  • Interesting Stories

Subgenre: Realistic Fiction

  • Takes place in any time period
  • Events in the story realistically could have occurred, but did not
  • Places in the story could exist in real life
  • Discusses real-life problems and issues

Realistic Fiction Examples

  • Common YA themes
    • Loss of family/friends
    • Honesty - guilt
    • Discovering your identity
    • Standing up to peer pressure
    • Choosing right over wrong
    • Survival
  • Examples:
    • Hatchet, The Bridge to Terabithia, On My Honor
    • The Outsiders, Trapped, Freak the Mighty

Subgenre: Science Fiction

  • Set in the future
  • Involves aliens, robots, futuristic technology, space ships
  • Could not take place with the technology we have today

Science Fiction Examples

    • The Hunger Games Trilogy
    • A Wrinkle in Time
    • The Giver
    • Ender’s Game
    • Bar Code

Subgenre: Fantasy

  • Takes place in the past, present, or future
  • Involves monsters, creatures,
  • magic, characters with magical
  • or superhuman powers
  • Cannot take place within our society

Fantasy Examples

    • Harry Potter
    • Percy Jackson
    • Monstrumologist
    • Goosebumps
  • Writing that is true or factual
  • Fiction = Fake / Non-Ficton = Not Fake
  • Not-Fake = Real
  • Genre: Non-Fiction

What is Non-Fiction?

  • Non-Fiction is any true depiction of a person or event in history.
  • Based on facts or evidence gathered during research
  • There are four subgenres of Non-Fiction:
    • Informational Writing
    • Persuasive Writing
    • Biography
    • Autobiography

Subgenre: Informational Writing

  • Explains something to the audience
  • Provides information – Sources, Facts, Statistics, Dates
  • Can cover many different topics
    • Science
    • Social Studies
    • Life Skills
    • Language Skills
    • Hobbies

Informational Writing Examples

    • Newspaper / Magazine Articles
    • Textbooks
    • Encyclopedias
    • Record Books

Subgenre: Persuasive Writing

  • Tries to influence or convince the reader
  • Tells one side of the story (bias or favoritism)
  • Will present an argument and supporting evidence
  • May be opinion-based

Persuasive Writing Examples

    • Letters to the Editor
    • Pamphlets
    • Brochures
    • Political Speeches
    • Advertising campaigns

Subgenre: Biography

  • Story about a person’s life
  • Written by someone other than who the story is about
  • Official or unofficial

Biography Examples

    • Steve Jobs: Thinking Differently
    • Who Was/Is …
      • (Leonardo daVinci, George Washington, etc.)
    • Discovery Education – JFK, Abraham Lincoln
    • Magazine Interviews

Subgenre: Autobiography

Autobiography Examples

    • The Diary of Anne Frank
    • Guts: The True Stories Behind Hatchet and the Brian Books
    • A Girl from Yamhill: A Memoir
    • Small Steps: The Year I Got Polio

Practice Problems

  • Each slide will describe a piece of writing.
  • You will write the genre and subgenre in your notes.

1 Your Science Textbook

  • Your science textbook contains much of the human knowledge of Earth and the universe.
  • Genre: ______________________________
  • Subgenre: ___________________________

2 In My Own Words by Eva Perón

  • Eva Perón writes the story of her life from childhood to her rise in political power in Argentina.
  • Genre: ____________________________
  • Subgenre: _________________________

3 They Came from the Sun by Tom Mitchell

  • The story of a race of aliens that come to enslave the residents of Earth with their advanced weaponry. Only one teacher can stop them, but is it too late?
  • Genre: ____________________________
  • Subgenre: _________________________

4 The Watsons Go to Birmingham by Christopher Paul Curtis

  • It is the story of an African American family living in Flint, Michigan who go to their grandmother's home in Birmingham, Alabama in the year 1963. The story is told around the 1963 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham, an actual event in history, even though the characters never really existed.
  • Genre: ______________________________
  • Subgenre: ___________________________

5 “Going, Going ... Green!” By Angela Gaimari

  • In this essay, Gaimari tries to convince people to do small things to help the environment. She gives readers many suggestions on how to live more eco-friendly and asks readers to make the change.
  • Genre: ____________________________
  • Subgenre: _________________________

6 Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

  • In his first year of middle school, the main character Greg Heffley deals with “cooties,” learning to wrestle, Halloween, acting in the school play, and other problems that many middle school students face.
  • Genre: ____________________________
  • Subgenre: _________________________

In the fourth and final novel in the Twilight series, Bella, a newly-turned vampire, must defend her vampire husband and family, and new half-vampire, half-human baby from an unjustified attack by the Volturi, the ancient vampire authority, using powers developed in her mind.

  • In the fourth and final novel in the Twilight series, Bella, a newly-turned vampire, must defend her vampire husband and family, and new half-vampire, half-human baby from an unjustified attack by the Volturi, the ancient vampire authority, using powers developed in her mind.
  • Genre: ____________________________
  • Subgenre: _________________________
  • 7 Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
  • Up Next
  • Classifying Literature: Part 2


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