Let's Talk Books!
Creating a Culture of Reading
UK Study Links Kids’ Pleasure Reading to Strong School Performance
The University of London’s Institute of Education (IOE) has announced the release of a study showing that children who read for pleasure are likely to do significantly better at school than their peers. The study, which is one of the first to examine the effect of reading for pleasure on children’s cognitive development over time, finds that children who read for pleasure made more progress in learning math, vocabulary, and spelling between the ages of 10 and 16 than those who rarely read. School Library Journal 9/13/13
Reading was found to be more important for children’s cognitive development at secondary school than the influence of their parents. The combined effect of regular reading, visits to the library and ready access to newspapers at 16 was four times greater than the advantage children gained from having a well-educated parent with a university degree, it was claimed. The Telegraph 9/11/13
Favorite genre and something you read on holiday...
- Literary Fiction/Classics
- Young Adult/Teen
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce
- Based on 2012 Academy-Award winning short film by the same name which was created in Louisiana
- Florida Reading Association Children's Book Award Nominee 2013-14
- "Morris Lessmore was visually modeled after the silent film actor Buster Keaton. The film drew particular inspiration from the storm scene in Keaton's Steamboat Bill Jr. and the tornado from The Wizard of Oz. Also an inspiration was the real-life Hurricane Katrina which devastated New Orleans in 2005."
- Both film and book communicate the power of words, writing, stories, and books!
- Study Guide from Simon & Schuster
What can I do to strengthen the reading culture in my classroom?
- Keep alive your own passion for reading: make time to read for pleasure YOURSELF!
- If you have a treadmill, read while you get your workout! Try an eReader or iPad since they lie flat and have adjustable font size
- Ask your students for book suggestions, and set a personal goal to read one or more student-recommended children's books this semester. Share with students what you are reading!
- Make a "Hot Reads" display in your room using a little easel stand and a children's book you've read
- If you teach 3rd-5th grade, read The Book Whisperer
- Consider joining GoodReads (largest social network designed for readers) and create your own "bookshelf" similar to what the students have on Home Connect (see image below). "Friend" people you know and see what others "have read, are currently reading, or want to read". This might be a fun summer project! Full-disclosure: GoodReads launched in 2007 but was purchased by Amazon last year.
- Follow children's book lovers on Twitter @donalynbooks @JensBookPage
- Read Reading Unbound, by Jeffrey Wilhelm and Michael Smith, This newly published book is about the importance of adolescents having choice in their reading.