My students delighted me this week by doing books shares right back from vacation. I gave them the option of waiting until next week, when they’d had time to prepare themselves. In my 10th grade class, the student scheduled to share chose to wait, I was ready to do one, when Noah volunteered. He finished BZRK by Michael Grant a month or so ago and had talked about it as he was reading it, but hadn’t formally shared it. He did a fabulous job with his summary and explanation.
9th grader Jordyn quickly scanned my shelves for one of the series she read in the past, and shared Cassandra Clare’s Clockwork Angel, explaining its connection to Clare’s previous series, and giving students advice on reading order.
My seniors are challenging each other to read books that are completely the opposite of what they normally would select for themselves. Today Alex shared the book his classmates selected for him: Catch a Falling Star by Kim Culbertson.
This week we only had one book share. Last week was a short week, and I forgot to remind the sophomore and freshman who would be next. I gave them the option of going next week, which they gladly took. I had reminded my senior, and he was ready. CJ is an avid reader and many of his books he donates to my classroom library. Even if he forgets it is his turn, he can plunk from the shelf a book he has enjoyed and talk about it.
He read The Rook by Daniel O’Malley a couple of years ago, but the story stuck with him.
It does sound like an intriguing story
Today Jenny shared Stolen by Lucy Christopher with the seniors. This is a book she read awhile ago, but it has stayed with her and has left her wishing for a sequel!
Today we had two student book shares. Sam shared Cormac McCarthy’s The Road with 10th grade and Heather shared Hunger, the second book in Michael Grant’s Gone Series with 9th grade. You can see she is already on to Plague. She is very much enjoying this series! Sam requested I not take his picture.
Allison highly recommends The 5th Wave and is currently reading the second book, The Infinite Sea. Sure alien invasion has been done, but Yancey writes it in a way that doesn’t feel cliche.
This year I finally figured out how to successfully implement student book talks. It’s not a complicated thing. I’ve always understood the importance of it, but somehow I never figured out how to make it a habitual part of our English classes. This year I saw some photos on Facebook of some of Jason Stephenson’s (@teacherman82) students doing a weekly book share and suddenly it all clicked for me. Two of my classes meet on a modified block schedule so we have a 40 minute class every Monday and longer classes two days later in the week. My seniors have two really long classes. It’s hard to do much in a 40 minute period, so that is our day to work on grammar and vocabulary and to book talk! We have a set schedule and each Monday a different student shares a book they are reading or have read.
These are the shares from so far this year.
Brandon shared Eoin Colfer’s Half Moon Investigations.
Katie talked about The Maze Runner by James Dashner, giving us great insight into the differences between the book and the movie.
Jordyn shared War of the Worlds by HG Wells and led a great discussion on some of Wells’ writing choices.
CJ shared The Enemy by Charlie Higson. Alex shared Andy Andrews’ The Final Summit. Lucy shared Songs of a Teenage Nomad by Kim Culbertson. Katrina talked about Gone by Michael Grant. Seyya shared Gae Polisner’s The Summer of Letting Go. Amanda shared The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks.
Daniel shared Allegiant by Veronica Roth.