March 16, 2005
If you’re having trouble getting your high school students to become interested in reading, I would start with a really great book that grabs your students' interest. You know your students the best, but I would suggest Nightjohn by Gary Paulsen or Monster by Walter Dean Myers. Both books are fairly short. Engage the students in many, many active reading activities (small group discussions, making predictions, choral readings, drawing pictures about the text, writing letters to the main characters, etc.) You might choose to read the first chapter aloud to the class to pique their interest and motivate them to read on their own. Monster is written in screenplay format, so it works great for oral reading. Grade the students for their participation in these activities. They'll earn good grades without even knowing it.