Another school year has come and gone. This was my first year back full-time since having my daughter (who will be four in August). I job-shared for three years with the talented Holly Mueller. You can check out her blog at www.hollymueller.blogspot.com. In this first year back, I was really able to dig deep and know more about my students and their reading lives. I started the year by presenting my version of Donalyn Miller's 40 Book Challenge. I called it the 40 Book Invitation and invited my students to attempt to read 40 books this school year. I had a wide range of readers, from gifted to emerging. However, over half of the kids in each class (I teach two LA classes) read 40 books or more. A significant amount read 30-39 books. How very exciting! It was almost unanimous that students read more this year than any other year. Plus, we all made summer reading lists and talked excessively about summer reading the last few days of school. And that, my friends, is what teaching reading is all about--a little motivation, mixed with some enthusiasm, and a dash of challenge. These kids rocked! (And, I'll really miss getting and giving recommendations from them over the summer!)
|Each class read over 1000 books! AMAZING!!|
|So, I can't figure out how to rotate this on the blog. Turn your monitor sideways for a second...|
I invite you to entertain the thought of challenging your readers in the upcoming school year. Do it by page numbers or books, but do it! Expect them to live a reading life. They'll surprise you with the their enthusiasm, desire, and results. Go read books this summer so you can become a "book whisperer" too!