Saturday, June 14, 2014

Spark Student Motivation 6/14/14

Spark Student Motivation Saturdays!  

Blessing Books: Motivating Students to Read!

Years ago, when I was teaching Pre-K, a teacher trainer was brought in for professional development.  I can't tell you her name or most of the content that she taught us, but one concept stuck with me.  A concept called "Bless the Book" has never left me or my classroom.  I don't even know if the trainer noticed this turn of phrase or if she has used the "Bless the Book" phrasing since that day.  But I have used it; I have adopted it and never forgotten it.  And when I tell you about it, I bet you won't ever forget it either.

What is Bless the Book?  

The concept simply involves a teacher giving his/her "blessing" for a particular book thus motivating a student to read the book.

Have you ever read a book and then had students want to read that same book? Did you read one book in a series aloud and have the students want to hear another? Or have students go to the library and come back with identical books?  Maybe you have had students bring in books  or check books out about your current science topic.  All of these are examples of books that have been "blessed".  Students have been motivated to read these books because the books have been blessed by the teacher or even another student.

To bless a book means to speak well of it, to show favor upon it, and to praise it.  You are actually endowing the book - giving it as a gift- to your students for them to enjoy.

What are some ways to actually bless books?

  1. Read books aloud!
  2. Read a portion of the book aloud- a chapter, a paragraph, a phrase, some dialogue.
  3. Discuss the jacket cover of a book.
  4. Read a summary of a book.
  5. Read a review of the book.
  6. Read the back cover of a book to your students.
  7. Read just the title aloud and wonder (aloud) what the book is about.
  8. Reference a particular book in a discussion you have with your students.
  9. Look at just the pictures in a book.
  10. During silent reading time, read the book yourself (model).
  11. When covering topics, wonder aloud about what kind of books have been written on the subject, how many, and what point of view.
  12. Have students review and recommend books aloud.
  13. Have students review and recommend books in writing.
  14. Pick up the book, simply say you have read it, and that you like it!
I have found that is not enough to just display a book.  You have to do something more.  You have to really draw the students' attention to the book and get them to focus on it for that moment in time to spark their interest.

We, as teachers, cannot underestimate the powerful positions we hold as readers in our rocking chairs on our classroom carpets. BLESS THE BOOKS!

Thanks to Head Over Heels for Teaching for starting this cool linky: Spark Student Motivation Saturdays!

1 comment:

  1. Bless the book is a great idea! It's a catchy title too! Everyone classroom should have lots of 'book blessings"! :) Thanks for sharing and linking up Juliet!
    Head Over Heels For Teaching


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