Patterns of Power, Grades 6–8


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About the Author

For over thirty years, Jeff Anderson has inspired writers and teachers of grades K-8 with the power and joy of the writing and grammar. He has written eight books for Stenhouse Publishers. He also writes middle-grade novels.

Travis Leech, coauthor of Patterns of Power: Inviting Adolescent Writers into the Conventions of Language, is currently a middle school instructional coach in Northside Independent School District in San Antonio, TX. He has thirteen years of experience in education, including teaching middle school English Language Arts and as a gifted and talented specialist. He has presented about engaging literacy practices and technology integration at the district, regional, and state levels.

Melinda Clark, coauthor of Patterns of Power: Inviting Adolescent Writers into the Conventions of Language, is currently the Academic Program Coordinator at John Jay High School in San Antonio, Texas. She has 31 years experience in education, including teaching middle school and high school English Language Arts, instructional coaching, independent consulting, and presenting at the district, regional, and state levels.


“For years, students have been handed sets of “I said so” rules as the standard means of learning language conventions. Patterns of Power moves beyond prescriptive rules to offer a series of steps that, instead, help students to recognize and internalize language conventions in a way that makes them better readers, writers, listeners, and speakers. Notice the patterns in sentences. Compare them with others. Try them yourself. Apply them. Edit them. I love how this book teaches students to really think about language.”—Kelly Gallagher“Patterns of Power will free you from the tyranny of old school grammar instruction and show you a process to guide adolescents toward joyful exploration and experimentation of crafting, creating, and conveying meaning. Whether you’re a grammar “phobe” or an expert sentence diagrammer, you will love this book.”—Cris Tovani“In a Patterns of Power classroom, the conventions of language become possibilities. Here, rules are replaced by invitations as our “wired to be inspired” middle school learners engage in honest inquiry, asking themselves and each other What can this convention do for me as a writer?”—Lisa Thibodeaux, Director of Secondary Curriculum, TX“Jeff Anderson is going to make me return to teaching middle school English Language Arts. This is the kind of book that would have made me feel like I could provide concrete, meaningful writing instruction to my students. I am grateful, however, that as an administrator I have the power to put this tool in the hands of all my teachers and allow the work of these authors to reach thousands of students.”—Chad Everett, Middle School Principal“Patterns of Power, 6–8 is a must-have for every teacher who longs to get their adolescents hooked on grammar. It gives middle grade teachers a simple, student-centered process that showcases what grammatical patterns do for readers and writers and how they lead to stellar writing.”—Jodi Ramos, Middle School Teacher, Department Chair, and New York Times education contributor“Jeff Anderson, Travis Leech, and Melinda Clark have crafted a gift for middle school literacy teachers and their students. Patterns of Power, 6–8 provides abundant lesson ideas for engaging student readers and writers in ways that improve comprehension, communication and self-expression, as well as a deeper look at why this approach works. Through students’ observations of authentic texts and focused exploration of writers’ craft and language use, you can increase their reading and writing confidence and skill. Clear, empowering, and effective!”—Donalyn Miller, Texas educator and author

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