Thursday, November 4, 2010

Fostering a love of reading...or trying to

I always usually love my job, but Wednesday was one of those days when I really loved my job.    I love books.  I love to read.  I loved to read to my boys.    I want, more than anything, for my students to develop a love of reading.  Books have been so much to, entertainment, education (those smutty romance novels were quite an education!).  If my students love being read to, they'll be much more motivated to learn to read.  If they can learn to read proficiently, they'll be able to access all the benefits of reading.

 Every day, I read a section of a chapter book to my class.The first book we read was The Swiss Family Robinson.  They loved it.  Lots of adventure.  Lots of animals.  Every year, we read The Indian in the Cupboard.  These are a couple of the books that I read to my boys, but this year I also wanted to read them some of the books that I loved as a girl.  So after The Swiss Family Robinson, we moved on to Little House in the Big Woods.  The first chapter or so, I was wondering what the heck I'd been thinking.  It was kind of slow.  Not much happened.  But then I started to see some great connections we could talk about between the family marooned on a previously uninhabited island and the family living alone in the middle of Wisconsin with no one around.  And the kids really have taken to the book.  Yesterday, as I was ending for the day (I always try to leave off right as something is about to happen), the kids were complaining, "No!  Can't you just read a little more?"  (Love it!)

"No," I told them.  "We have to do math."

"Ohhh," said E.  "I hope this book never gets over.  I love it!"

I don't need any kind of award or recognition for the rest of my life: that was enough right there. :)  And, of course, she'll be getting Little House on the Prairie for Christmas.  I just hope someone will read it to her.


  1. What grade do you teach? I would love to share some good read alouds. I like The Indian in the Cupboard. I also love The Adventure of King Midas and I think it is the same author. I am looking for some new books to read to my class. I haven't read Swiss Family Robinson.

  2. I teach first grade. I always love new ideas. I've never heard of The Adventure of King Midas...I'll have to check that out.

    I read the Great Illustrated Classics version of Swiss Family Robinson. There's a great old Disney movie version of the book that we watch after finishing the book.

    Another book I loved as a kid that we're going to read (maybe next) is The Secret of NIMH. Well, my version is called Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, I think, but it's the same story. And I'm toying with reading them The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. I'm a little bummed that they made the Narnia movies and the kids may be familiar with it.