May is Get Caught Reading Month, and it’s time to start making your plans to encourage students to keep reading once classes are over. Try these resources to get your students involved in independent reading all summer long.
Introduce book clubs to your students now with the ReadWriteThink.org lesson plan “Book Clubs: Reading for Fun” – then encourage your students to meet and read during the summer months. For a take on book clubs with older students, check out “Watch Out, Oprah! A Book Club Assignment for Literature Courses” from Teaching English in the Two-Year College. If face-to-face meetings aren’t possible, suggest online discussions of the books students read.
Prepare for summer reading by asking your students to investigate the reading process with the ReadWriteThink.org lesson “Developing a Living Definition of Reading in the Elementary Classroom” or the lesson “Developing a Definition of Reading through Analysis in Middle School“. Using the strategies in the lessons, challenge students not only to define summer reading but also to finish the lesson with at least one new title or genre they’ll read during the summer months.
To structure independent reading and support summer reading, have students complete a reading plan, a simple wish list of books they hope to read in the future. The ReadWriteThink.org lesson “Developing Reading Plans to Support Independent Reading” invites students to reflect on the texts that they have read and then compile lists of books they want to read next.
Catch students’ interest by listening to the podcast episodes “Summer Adventures” and “Summer Series“. During your last weeks of school, promote summer reading by inviting students to create brochures and flyers that suggest books and genres to explore during the summer months with the ReadWriteThink.org lesson “Authentic Persuasive Writing to Promote Real Summer Reading“.
For titles to share with students (or read yourself), take a look at the podcast series Text Messages which provides families, educators, out-of-school practitioners, and tutors reading recommendations they can pass along to teen readers.
Even college students can be encouraged to read when classes end. Encourage students to consider the wide range of texts around them with the Teaching English in the Two-Year College article “Too Many Other Enticing ‘Texts’: On Why I Didn’t Read Last Night“.
For more ideas for summer reading, see the “Summer Reading and Learning” Teaching Resource Collection, which includes links to additional articles, lesson plans, and other resources.