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Literature Circles and Book Talks

March 25, 2009

“I find that giving students a choice in what to read is always an important goal. I use literature circles in which students pick the book they are interested in reading. I group them with other students interested in the same book. I give them a collection of books from which to choose. If several students agree on a book that’s not part of my original set, I let them read it if it is not objectionable in any way. The point is to get them interested in what they are going to read. I also choose high-interest novels and stories to read together in class. There's no sense in reading something that I really like if it's not going to interest them. Another technique is to do book talks. Read a lot of the literature and non-fiction material available for their reading levels and talk these books up after you read them. Talk to them as the READER of the book, not the teacher teaching it. Tell them what you liked about it and why you chose it in the first place. When they see you excited about reading and then read and like a book based on your recommendation, reading starts to catch on.”

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