Reading

I’ve written about this before, but I’ve refined my ideas and wanted to write about them.

Here’s the basic idea: I print a poster about once a week to show what I’ve been reading. It shows what I’m reading now, what I’ve just finished, and what I plan to read next.

Since I started this, about a year ago, I’ve beefed up the “What I’ve Read Recently” section. I’ve added the star ratings and the reviews so that they mirror our catalog software. Kids can write reviews and rate books in the catalog; I do the same with the books I feature on my posters.

I’ve also added little tags to inform the kids (and teachers) further. There’s the “100 Book Club” tag, which lets the kids know that it’s one of the “best” books in the media center. The “New!” badge is self-explanatory, as is the “Grown-Up Book” tag.

The main purpose of the poster is to show the kids what a really good reader does, the pattern and flow of a life of reading. They can see that I’m looking ahead to what I want to read (and do the same themselves with their personal pages in the catalog). They can see that I may have multiple books going on at one time. They can see that some books move through quickly, while others will hang around a long time. If they’re clever, they can see that I may abandon a book, and that it may return at a later date.

Each time I put up a new poster, I clip out the little Recent books at the bottom and staple them across the top of the bulletin board as a kind of reading record:

I also clip the Recent books and their reviews and put them over to the side for the life of the new poster. After that, I take them out to the shelf and tape them up where the book itself resides:

That way, my insidious plan to lure kids into a lifelong habit of reading has a longer shelf life. Ha. See what I did there?

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