Follow the Reader

By Staff Writer, Laura e. Crook

Bookworms are making a comeback! Reading is more popular than ever, thanks to the successful movie adaptations of children’s books like Diary of a Wimpy Kid and The Chronicles of Narnia. Reading is one of the most important skills children develop. A strong reading foundation allows children to excel in other academic areas as they grow and learn. That’s where you come in! Keeping books in the classroom is a great way to let kids develop a life-long passion for reading.

“But wait!” You might say, “Not all of my students are crazy about reading. Some of my kids prefer to run around or draw pictures instead of sitting with a book.”

As educators, you know better than anyone that some kids might take to reading like a duck to water, but others need a little bit of extra attention, a little longer to sound out the words, a little more patience and understanding. If you’re surrounded by unenthusiastic readers, try to identify the learning styles of the children in your class. This way, you can tailor your approach to reach your students.

Visual learners are fast talkers and have a tendency to be a little impatient or interrupt their classmates. These kids might enjoy a book with lots of pictures, or if they’re reading a picture-less book, encourage them to use their imagination and provide their own illustrations!

Auditory learners understand instructions that are given verbally. Try reading a grade-appropriate book out loud during snack or lunch—the auditory learners in your class will absorb the knowledge, and the other students will have the opportunity to stretch their imaginations.

Kinesthetic learners respond best to hands-on activities. Spend an afternoon adapting a book or short story into a skit or a short play! The kinesthetic learners in your classroom will thrive in the hands-on environment, and everyone will have fun!

Looking for more resources and ideas to create little bookworms in your classroom? Check out some programs offered by Scholastic. Between book fairs and monthly book clubs, Scholastic is committed to developing literacy in the classroom and beyond.

Lexile is another great resource. Input your students’ Lexile reading measures and search for books that match their reading level… and their interests! Find animal books for the animal lovers or science books for your technologically inclined students.

Do you have your own methods to encourage less-than-enthusiastic readers? What’s the most popular book in your classroom library?

Let us know! Leave us a comment, find us on Facebook, or send us a tweet @freefieldtrips.

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