Sunday, November 19, 2017

Developing Readerly Lives

"My child won't stop reading!" When I hear THAT parent complaint, I know that I've been successful!
One of my goals is for my students to view themselves as readers and writers. Based on student surveys at the beginning of the year, many of my kids read or write solely for homework or class assignments.  As I share my own readerly life, I show my class my "shelfie",  one of the many areas in my home where there are books. . . not to mention the side of my bed, piles on the floor, on dressers, in baskets. . . you know . . .
One of our early class assignments is to have a family member take a picture of them reading in favorite location. As you can see from the collage above, they loved showing their reading nooks and spaces! Every day students read books of their choice (after much training about "right fit" books) during Reader's Workshop. One of their favorite days is Flashlight Friday. We turn off  all the lights and students read in the dark with flashlights (from Dollar Tree and blinged out with fancy duct tape) or with finger pointer lights.
When we started our non-fiction unit of study, kids did an "archaeological dig" through their backpacks. They discovered all kinds of non-fiction writing, from school notices that never made it home (!),  ingredient and nutrition listings on candy wrappers,  calendar with assignments in student planners, an X-box game direction booklet, labels and tags. It reminded me of an older kid version of noticing environmental print when I taught primary grades. Once they realized that non-fiction is not just about reading books, they searched and noticed all the informational reading they did at home. We labeled a new section of our Reader's Notebooks: "My Non-Fiction Reading Life" and wrote about our findings. (We had also done this at the beginning of the year with their fiction reading life.)
How do you teach your students to view themselves as readers?

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