Thursday, February 1, 2018

JUST RIGHT BOOKS

Good choice!
How do you find a book that is right for you, your child or your student? A book that one will read from cover to cover can be a daunting task for new readers. For this post, I would like to provide some guidance on getting the right books in to the hands of new and emerging readers. 

Let’s start at the beginning with a comprehensive, well researched article by Pamela Paul and Maria Russo (The New York Times Books) entitled How to Raise a Reader. If you are a parent, it's never too late to start but showing by example is extremely important. If you are a teacher of students that may not have had the type of access this article suggests from an early age, I want to invite you to think about your classroom as your home with your own child or children. How could you use these same strategies and ideas to modify how you teach? One example that is fun at home or school is to "read and repeat." My kindergarten and first grade students love doing this. “I say it first, you say it second.” The Elephant and Piggie books by Mo Willems are great for this as are Ring! Yo? and Yo! Yes? by Chris Raschka. 

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Determine your objective and identify resources to meet your objective. If you have a FREE or classroom library, be sure to include age appropriate anchor charts or reading checklists (for students who are already reading and writing) to guide your reader. Every classroom library should have an anchor chart that guides selection that you have hopefully reviewed multiple times with your students. 

Even after having library class for several years and some of the greatest rock star classroom teachers, my library students would stand in line to check out a book they had not even opened! You can not reinforce how to find the book that's right for you enough. On the flip side there are those students who will look at every book in your classroom library or take the entire class period in library and NOT find a book. This is a skill that requires lots of practice. For my upper elementary students I would often make reading passports and they would be challenged to read a book from multiple genres throughout the year and earn stickers for each. Access to a variety of reading materials must be matched by knowledgeable guidance and example!

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Visit Reading Rockets a national multimedia literacy initiative offering information and resources on how young kids learn to read, why so many struggle, and how caring adults can help. Choosing and Using Kids Books is a great section with information for parents, caregivers and teachers alike. A sister site in Spanish is Colorin Colorado.


You may also enjoy reading The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller and Passionate Readers – The Art of Reaching and Engaging Every Child by Pernille Ripp. Add more reading minutes to your day by listening...try Audible and get your first two books free!


Please note: If you purchase a recommended book through this site I earn an affiliate commission.

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