I spent a few days thinking of a project that I thought would be most meaningful for my students. This year, with the addition of 8th graders to our middle school, has been a huge challenge. Not only that, but I think the focus of most of our attention is going towards managing behavior instead of instruction. There are so many things that I try to teach related to information literacy throughout the year that a focus on the importance and a love for reading has kind of fallen on the wayside. With summer creeping up, I decided I would focus this “do it yourself” project on a summer reading program. This is my third year in the district and this will be the first year I have implemented a building summer reading program but I think it is very much needed.
I have used my Scholastic representative as a great resource. She always has great suggestions on how to get kids hooked on reading. I met with her last week about the Scholastic summer reading program and how to get it started with my students. Over the past week, I’ve gone through resources that she has given me for parents, students and how to launch a program and I have also set all my students up with a username and password so they can begin logging their minutes for the remainder of the school year and throughout the summer. I’m going to spend the next few weeks meeting with my scheduled classes as well as other students that don’t have library this semester talking about how they can log their minutes and where they can go to find popular book lists that are age appropriate for them. I have put together information to send home to parents so they can help their children over the summer to stay involved with this. I have also contacted a children’s librarian that I know in the city that is going to come in and talk to students about the public library, how to get a library card and programs that are available in the summer. I have attached the link to the Scholastic summer reading program below. I like it because it’s really easy to use by me, parents, teachers and students. I also love that students are responsible for doing most of the work by holding them accountable for minutes they have been reading. I think when they can see how much they are reading in front of them and are competing for most minutes read it will motivate them. I plan on doing a welcome back event in September when we come back to unveil how many minutes our school read and giving out prizes to our top readers.