We are starting lit. circles next week.
This is another thing I have made a million excuses not to do.
Because it's hard and kind of scary.
It is also absolutely the best idea.
Students need to read.
They need to read on their own, on a schedule, outside of class.
The point is, we are starting next week.
To do that, I had to get some information.
Last week, I gave a survey to my students.
I asked them who they wanted to work with and who they wanted to veto.
They also need to choose what they read.
Well, within limits.
So that was today.
It took me a little while to get all organized and stuff.
And due to a meeting I totally forgot about, I was NOT as prepared as I meant to be.
Thank goodness my first hour is soooooo forgiving.
Here is what I did:
I stole/borrowed/copied a survey of the books for kids to fill out.
On it, each book title, author, description, a picture of the cover were listed.
Students had to identify three books they might want to read.
Then they had to pick the one they were most interested in and tell why.
Before they completed the survey, they got to preview the actual books.
I made a pile of books at each pod.
When class started, I went through the pile.
I held up each book and gave a two to three sentence summary.
My short summaries are designed to be both shocking and vague.
As soon as I finished, I invited them to look at the books for more information.
Can I just say, it was the cutest thing to watch them fight over books?
I had to explain, repeatedly, that I have more copies.
It took a ton of tries to make it clear, they get their own copy next week.
Several were not happy.
One begged and begged to take a book home for the long weekend.
I finally told her to come back at the end of the day, hoping she would forget.
I don't care, I enjoyed her desire to read.
One of the greatest secrets I ever learned about getting kids to read is easy.
Don't let them.
Give them just enough time to get interested and then stop them.
Give them just a taste.
If it is a whole class book, do it out loud.
If you do this a few times at the beginning of a good book, you can hook the most resistant readers.
Book love is beautiful.
This was the first tease.
It worked, at least a little.
A little taste to capture some interest.
Definitely, every little piece of joy, curiosity, or desire I can provoke towards reading, is an extraordinarily good thing!