Virtual Voyage – Book Study

I just finished The Energy Bus by John Gordon this week and it was exactly what I needed!

First, let me talk about the book study/club piece of it.  We read this for our VALOR meeting and each day we had TIME given to us to read a little and discuss with different people.  Our leaders modeled for us the many ways of discussing with groups that we could take back into our classrooms, which made it more fun!

Here are the PROS about book studies:
– Having the time to discuss a book in depth with others deepens our learning.

– Discussing the book and making connections with other people allows you a chance to really listen to others and develop new friendships.  

– Discussing a book with others allows you to see things from a new perspective.

– Seeing things from a new perspective gives you new ideas and fresh thinking about things.  Some of these things may be things you have never thought about.

– Discussing a book with others gives you a sense of community and a meaningful, purpose for reading the book in the first place.

Isn’t this what we want the readers in our classroom to feel?  Purpose, Community, Deep Learning, Meaningful…..all things I want!  

Second, I want to go on record saying that every single person should read this book!  I always read it to my classroom to establish the community and positivity at the beginning of the year, but it is the children’s version.  They do have one.  After reading this book, I felt so empowered about not letting anyone or anything suck the positive energy out of me!  How easy it can happen in our profession, but oh how so important it is that we not allow it.  We have that choice.  We are the DRIVER of our BUS!  🙂

If you haven’t read this book, I HIGHLY recommend it.  It is a quick, easy read and one you will want to reread every year.

Books Clubs

Book Clubs have begun and the kids LOVE them!  What does one do when you realize all your little babies are taking off in reading and the normal 1st grade reading groups are not cutting it anymore?!  You bump up that comprehension teaching!!  First, I let them choose which chapter series they were interested in and they formed groups by their interests.  Then, they read chapter by chapter and discussed together.  They answered higher-level thinking questions, rolled dice with comprehension questions and retelling, and used Chatterpix to retell what happened in the chapter. That is only the beginning!  As we secure these beginning steps to respectfully discussing on topic with partners, we will branch out.  I am THRILLED that our class is able to do this because it brings such ownership,excitement, and the LOVE to reading that every child needs to experience! Check out the fun in action below.