Steal Like an Artist, by Austin Kleon, another of our summer professional reading books, I have happily borrowed a wonderful idea from a neighboring teacher.
Kay Honeyman, brand new author of The Fire Horse Girl, blogs about holding a book pass in the library. Her librarian is a friend, the terrific Jill Bellomy. Their book pass sounded like so much fun that I decided to give it a go.
A book pass is just what the name implies. Students come to the library to pass around books set out for them to examine. They make a list of ones that sound appealing and add to the list throughout the year. The goal is for this "to read" list to contain lots of books that they will enjoy reading for pleasure.
I did a book pass with sixth graders today, and it went really well. Even the pickiest (er, most discerning) reader left with two or three books they want to read this year.
I modified yesterday's book pass due to a short period with the sixth graders, and I'm including the steps here:
2. Number each table.
3. Make a book pass sheet for students to write down the books they want to read.
4. Place 8-10 books at each table of various genres.
5. Before the students start, ask them how they choose the books they read for fun. Ask them to use these strategies for the book pass and to write down any books they might like to read.
6. Give students 4-5 minutes at each table, rotating tables until each group has been to each table.
7. If you see a group that's not really interested in the books on their table, walk by and add a few different books to the mix.
8. Ask students to star books on their list that they are most excited about, and then give them the opportunity to check out books from any table. If more than one student wants a particular book, place holds.
9. Allow students to share what interests them about the books they have selected.
10. Tip: Since the tables will be mostly empty after one period, use books that the previous group has just returned to the drop box or good books from your shelving cart to replenish the tables.
Let us know how the book pass worked for your students! Happy reading...