“Read. Read anything. Read the things they say are good for you, and the things they claim are junk. You’ll find what you need to find. Just read.”
This week, we draw inspiration from the Bixby Read-A-Thon, and pair it with our goals for the spring semester. After reflecting on individual goals this week, our students chose areas in which they would like to challenge themselves; an overwhelming majority, included wanting to read more, as part of their goals. In addition, most of our students want to read what they like and not be assigned books. In the spirit of creating Wild Readers (our curriculum goal this year), our students will choose their own reading material to use as we form groups that are focused on our students chosen growth areas. Most of our students chose to be a part of two or more of the following groups:
Goal: Learn to summarize, review, and compile an annotated bibliography
Book Report Club
Goal: Strengthen and develop essay-writing skills
Study Skills Club
Goal: Learn study skills to help you succeed; get organized; learn how to thoroughly read questions for homework and tests in middle school; develop a heightened awareness to your academic strengths and weakness, and learn how to use them in your favor
Goal: Creatively represent characters, plot, and setting using your medium of choice
Bigger Books Club
Goal: Read more challenging material
Goal: Read a 100+ books this year?!
Since our students already took the 40-book challenge this year, and are currently working very hard on it, I handed out a Q&A this week to see if any of our students wanted to go beyond the 40. A third of our students chose a hefty goal of reading a hundred or more books. However far they make it, the idea of reading more than a hundred books this year, has certainly excited our most voracious readers!
Read More Club
Goal: Read more than you ever have; Increase your book intake
And finally, we have our most popular club, the Read More Club; the focus of this group will be concentrated on turning our reluctant readers into Wild Readers. In addition, this club will feed and nourish our developing to advanced readers. This club will also be encouraged to read their preferred genre, which will include graphic novels. As Donalyn Miller says, “If we value all readers, we must value all reading.” Miller goes on to say that she has learned that so-called light reading has more benefits for early readers than we previously imagined and further states, “the evidence suggests that light reading provides the competence and motivation to continue reading and to read more demanding texts.”
Plus, the kids will be thrilled!