Tuesday, September 6, 2016

7 places to check for your school's reading culture

Is a Love of Reading evident in your building? Is there evidence that your school actively champions reading? Here is a list of things that school with strong reading cultures often have….how many does your school have?


School entrance foyer

    • Signs and displays about reading.
    • Notice of reading events:
      • Challenges, incentives, author visits, book awards
    • Photos of students, staff and other role models reading
    • The principal’s book of the week
    • Promotion of the public library and public library event
School Halls
    • Signs pointing to the library
    • Library open and ready to receive students all day long
    • Weekly Library quizzes- come to the library to find the answers
    • Student work about books - art, writing inspired by books, reviews
    • Information about new books coming to the library and upcoming events
    • Quotes about reading, favourite lines from books
The Principal’s Office
    • Evidence showing to anyone visiting, that the principal thinks reading is important:
      • Quotes, favourite books, books for students to read, students work about reading, books for parents
    • Establish a well-stocked school library that has materials for all students.
    • Support Reading, Book events and PD on them
    • Signs pointing to the library (how many steps to the library?)
    • A poetry walk around the school
    • Create a Twitter hashtag to share books
Staff Room
    • Professional reading about children’s books
    • Information from the library, and promotion professional development on YA literature
    • Notice board with must-reads, awards and recommended read alouds
    • Have a data wall to track student progress in reading
Teachers in Classroom
    • Reading alouds everyday
    • Making time for your students to read everyday
    • Plenty of great books on display
    • Sharing teacher reading with students
    • Give students choice in what they read
    • Build a high quality classroom library
    • Know YA books (maybe joining EIPS Mighty Book Smackdown or the Best of the Best)
    • Let kids talk about books and reading
    • Make reading fun (blind book dates, book auctions, etc)
Other Activities
    • Host book clubs for students or parents
    • Collaborate with public library
    • Support author visits
    • Host a Read IN
    • Share book talks
    • Take students on a book-buying field trips (we did this at 6 schools in EIPS last year, ask me for more details)
    • Listen to audiobooks
    • Learn about specific needs for specific populations
    • Adopt a whole-school approach...a great place is start is your School Library.
    • Celebrate. Celebrate. Celebrate

As you can imagine this is a beginning list, a place to start from and build on. Stay tuned for more LOOK FORS coming soon from your friendly nighbourhood SFS staff.

The above ideas are taken from a variety of sources.  Here are links to original articles and further reading on this topic:

Sources and Resources


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