Saturday, June 24, 2017

Celebrating Riveting Read Alouds!

It's time to CELEBRATE This Week with Ruth Ayres from Discover. Play. Build.  Every week Ruth invites us to share our celebrations from the week and link up at her blog. What a fun way to reflect on everything there is to be thankful for. 

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This week I'm celebrating school-wide collaboration!

*throws confetti*

Today I'm excited to celebrate all the great professional reading I've done this summer already! Many of my friends just finished up their last week of school but we're finishing up our fourth week of summer. We've had so much fun already but the best part has been having time to spend reading and writing. I'll be finishing up Disrupting Thinking by Kylene Beers and Robert Probst and Renew! by Shawna Coppola. Both are amazing and both discuss the importance of silent reading of choice books in school but we know read alouds are also necessary in our classrooms. 

I have a story to tell about read alouds. A few weeks ago we went to the library to stock up on summer reading books and my younger son wasn't sure what books to check out. He loves non-fiction picture books about his favorite sports teams or athletes but I wanted to help him also find fiction to read. I immediately thought of the read alouds I knew his teacher shared with his class during the year. Knowing they had read some of the Lulu books by Judith Viorst and Lindsay Leavitt's Commander in Cheese, I suggested we look for the next books in the series or books he hadn't read yet. He was game.
I love series reading because it helps readers out! If a reader already knows the main characters, the setting, or the structure of the book, it makes it easier to get into the book and for young readers especially, it's gives them a head start. My little guy is about to turn seven and going into 2nd grade so this also helped me be confident in reading chapter books. 

Don't underestimate the power of a read aloud for older readers as well though. At the end of the school year, I met with an 8th grader who wanted to prepare herself as much as possible for freshman year and her next four years in high school. We talked about how important it would be to keep up her reading over the summer and I pulled a stack of books to share with her so she would have a list to go off of for her summer reading. But more book talks and more read alouds would have given her great ideas for her own reading as well. 

If you are on the look out for some great books to share with students next year, I'd like to share Scholastic's Riveting Read-Alouds: 35 Selections to Spark Deep Thinking, Meaningful Discussion, and Powerful Writing by Janet Allen and Patrick Daley. It's full of amazing texts to share, the actual excerpt to read aloud, and ideas for how to discuss and invite students to write after reading. There are a range of genres and even formats that allow you to offer a variety for your students. You know I'm a fan of mentor texts (right?!) and each of the samples here can also be used as mentor texts when writing. 

Here's the summary of the book from GoodReads: "Why read aloud to students in middle school? Reading aloud exposes them to a wide variety of text types and genres, builds background knowledge, models effective reading behaviors, and more. The selections in this book have been carefully chosen to appeal to diverse students and boost their reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills. Each selection comes with a teaching page that includes discussion and writing prompts and more. A powerful way to cultivate students’ love of reading!"
Whether you just started your summer or have been out of school for a bit like we have, I hope you get to celebrate summer reading too! I'm proud to say I'm caught up on my #bookaday plans and it feels good! Happy reading, y'all!

What are you celebrating this week?

Thank you to Scholastic
for sending me a copy of Riveting Read Alouds to review!

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