Sunday, September 30, 2012

TPT: Halloween Word Work, Worksheets, and Activities Packet

UPDATE:  This Packet is now 50% off (only $3.50)!

This Halloween Word Work and Activity Packet has nine different activities for your students.  You can click here to purchase it.  These activities are great for 1st - 4th Grade.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Friday Freebie: Said is Dead

Does this sound familiar?

-The man walked up to the woman.  He said, "How are you?"
-She said, "I am doing well.  How are you?"
-"Fine," he said, "How was your day?"
-"My day was good," she said, "How was your day?"
-He said, "It was great."
-She said, "That is nice."

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Ideas for the Classroom: Word Monster

Ack!  It's a Word Monster!!

This friendly and goofy guy was pretty easy to make, and the kids love him.  I use him with my 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade reading intervention groups.  The idea is pretty simple (although not very logical). 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Please Excuse the Mess....

The iHeartLiteracy site is currently under construction.  Please excuse the mess!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Reading Research Monday: The Effects of Student Choice

The Positive Effects of Choice

Multiple studies from a variety sources specifically examine student choice as it relates to reading.  From these studies, many positive effects of choice are seen.

The March/April 2010 issue of Adolescent Literacy in Perspective discusses how providing students choice in reading gives them:

  • A sense of control
  • A sense of purpose
  • A sense of competence
A study of sixth graders by Kelly Peirpont from the University of Dayton comes to similar conclusions in The Effects of Student Choice on Reading Attitude and Comprehension.  Through qualitative and quantitative data, Peirpont finds that with choice:

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Notorious Izzy Fink

Author:  Don Brown
Age Level:  9-14
Pages: 150

Set in the 1890’s on the Lower East Side of New York, The Notorious Izzy Fink follows the life of Sam Glodsky as he fights against poverty, street gangs, and a potential cholera outbreak.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Reading Research Monday: Children's Literature Preferences

Broad Patterns in Preferences

The International Reading Association's research on Children's Literature revealed several broad patterns in children's preferences.  Ultimately, younger children like:
  • Narrative Forms
  • Lively Action
  • Humor
  • Nonsense

These preference hold true in the lower elementary grades.  However, research shows that reading interests between the genders begin to split in the upper elementary grades. 

Gender Preferences

According to an article in The Reading Teacher, upper elementary males prefer:
  • Enticing book covers (they do judge a book by its cover)
  • Series books by a favorite author
    • Particularly fantasy and realistic fiction
  • Books where a main character goes through a series of situations or where the book spans a long time
  • Informational books with illustrations and shorter passages
  • Graphic novels and graphic nonfiction
 The top five most popular categories for females in upper elementary as researched by the American Association of School Librarians are:
  • Animals
  • Science
  • Literature
  • Sports
  • Biography
The AASL found that females enjoy leisurely reading more than males and that females also enjoy a wide range of books, showing much individual preference.

Regardless of age, teachers should choose books that fall under broad preferences for read-alouds to interest as many students as possible.  However, independent or small group reading should be tailored to students' individual interests to help build intrinsic motivation for reading.

Middle School and High School

As students age, two main trends become apparent.  First, the number of students who say they read for enjoyment declines.  Second, students reading preferences become highly individualized. 
These two factors can make it difficult for teachers to find texts that engage students and motivate them to read.  Ultimately, teachers (and parents) need to get to know their students so they can help recommend books that will be of high interest to them.  Utilize school and local librarians to help make book-student matches.  Students are not opposed to reading when they find books that they like.

Leave a Comment

What broad preferences do you see amongst your students or children?  What specific books or authors can your kids not put down?

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