I am participating in a book study on Reading Wellness by Jan Miller Burkins and Kim Yaris with my fellow Literacy Land bloggers. The study begins TOMORROW over on Adventures in Literacy Land. Each day this week, a blogger will take you through a chapter. I am going to post my own thoughts on each chapter here on my blog as well!
The book is available through Amazon or online (currently for free through the product preview!) at Stenmen Publishers. We invite you to read along, blog with us, ask questions, or just share your thoughts! Today I am just going to introduce you to the text (there is also an introduction over on Lit Land).
Are your students engaged readers?
The very first paragraph in the text brings up how so many students have trouble discussing favorite books, authors, and having conversations about reading in general. This is SO TRUE. Immediately, I thought of the DRA2. The reading engagement portion of the assessment requires students to answer questions such as "What is your favorite book?" "What are three things you do well as a reader?" "Would you rather read alone or with a buddy?" All too often the response is just complete silence. Or one word with a complete lack of engagement. Are these students healthy readers? Are there things we can do as teachers to help them beyond test prep and fluency drills? Of course!
Meeting the Intentions of the Text
Burkins and Yaris state that the purpose of their book is to assist teachers with finding new ways to help students become lifelong learners and readers (beyond the drill and kill of standardized assessments) which is what all teachers truly want!
The text is composed of 6 chapters, each beginning with a vignette that any teacher can relate to, followed by a rationale and lesson. The lessons are amazing because they are provided in a step by step format, making them easy to implement but they also explain higher level concepts with concrete examples. Each lesson is adapted for both early and upper elementary students. Finally, the authors finish each chapter with an explanation as to how their activities meet the the four intentions of the book.
Check back tomorrow here and over on Lit Land for a discussion of the first chapter!
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