A great post- but a question to go along with it: Who chooses the books that go on the school bookshelves? Is it the teachers? The school board? How do they decide “reading comprehension” or what “reading level” that children should be reaching at “X” (Meaning whatever number you want to put there) Grade? I remember reading several books in my classroom; I was never without a book during lunchtime from the bookshelf- some of the books I was drawn to could explain things that I could relate to- while others were in a completely different place to me. Although the books in classrooms are good, they’re usually about one subject- coming of age, fiction, short chapter books or picture books- not ONCE have I seen a classic- like Little Women or Jane Eyre in a classroom library. I was reading that stuff when I was 7 and 9, I didn’t understand the whole thing of Jane Eyre- but I still loved it. Teachers instead of just picking out books for the classroom libraries which they see as “appropriate”, should be encouraging students to find books of their own- explore a new genre, read a big book; you never know what types of stories you’ll enjoy unless you read them!
Research shows that classroom libraries help students attain reading achievement. These key points from Scholastic’s Classroom Libraries Work: Research & Results provide concrete examples that will help you build an effective skill-building library for your students. Additional research support for the importance of classroom libraries can be found here.
- Children learning to read need access to meaningful and personally interesting books.
- Effective teachers of reading incorporate diverse trade books into their reading curriculum, introducing their students to the wide range of genres, authors, and topics.
- While the best predictor of reading success is the amount of time spent reading, reading achievement is also influenced by the frequency, amount, and diversity of reading activities.
- By providing access to a rich classroom library, teachers promote greater amounts of reading, increased reading frequency, and more diverse reading experiences among their students, thus helping them to attain greater levels of reading achievement.
- Effective teachers…
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