Friday, May 8, 2009

The Book Whisperer

By Donalyn Miller

I originally got this book to use with my own children, ages 10 and 5. I expected it to be about ways to encourage your children to read more and to help picking books to match their interests. Instead it was a book written by a middle school reading teacher about how she encourages reading in her own classroom. Reading her book transported me back to my days as a middle school reading teacher and the challenges I faced getting my students to read.

I loved this book. There is so much practical, usable advice that can be used in the classroom as well as at home. Her basic premise it that to learn to love reading, children need to read often and read what they choose to read. What obvious, but so often overlooked advice!

I found the book useful both as a parent and as a teacher. My decision to let my children read the books of their own choosing and not what I though they should read was validated. I also received an eye opener about required books in my class. While I use several books in reading groups in my classes, I have decided, based on Mrs. Miller’s experience and advice, to allow students to choose from a variety of novels and create their own groups the next time I do a novel study. My goal being to let the students have ownership over their novel and hopefully enjoy the novel and achieve the standards I have set for the project as well as help develop a love of reading in the future.

Rating - A

1 comment:

  1. That's an awesome idea, that we let them choose what they want to read.

    Although, when it comes to the 19th reading of Cinderella, maybe not. :)