Discussion Questions:1) Would you start the year off with a book frenzy similar to Miller's or would you adapt it? I have started the year with a similar setup for the last ten years. I have found that it is easier to do with older readers. My 3rd grade students struggle a little more in knowing how to pick "good-fit" books, but I still find it an important part of our classroom community.
2) What were your impressions of Miller's more positive descriptions of the three types of readers? I agree with her descriptions of dormant readers ( I have two sons who fall into this category), and her description of underground readers (I was one of these, too, and my other two sons are also underground.
When it comes to reluctant readers, I wonder. I have in the last couple years had students in my room who have a reading disability, but they are great thinkers about literature. The process of reading is SO painful for them that it takes a ton of energy for them to read a book that is really way below them content-wise. They are pulled from the room for reading interventions from special ed teachers, given the opportunity to read with adult volunteers, and work in small groups with students of similar abilities, yet they do not progress as necessary in their independent reading skills. They grow in their knowledge of stories, plots, and skills, but generally in the texts that they hear read to them. I allow them to use assistive tech during some of their independent reading time so that they can hear stories closer to their thinking level. Otherwise, they would struggle through independent reading time each day. Does anyone else have this happen? I am talking about third grade readers who read at a guided reading level of E or F but comprehend stories they hear that are above a third grade reading level....
3) 40 books!!! What do you think of that?? I am wondering. I think if I delegate genre categories like Ms. Miller, I would add a category of picture books (we use them so much for skill instruction) that would make it more feasible for them to make it. I don't know... what do other 3rd grade teachers think? It is a year when students are just beginning to read "chapter books." Is 40 too many?
I would love to hear your ideas. Head over to Thinking of Teaching if you would like to participate in this book club!