Welcome back to Literacy Musing Mondays, your linkup for all things about literacy, learning, reading, and writing. This weeks guest post comes from Anita Ojeda who shares with us tips to help reluctant readers learn to love reading. As an educator, she knows first hand the importance of reading in learning success. I hope you enjoy her guest post and learning more about her!
Ten Tips for Turning Reluctant Readers into
Eager Readers (Who Will Chase the Fed Ex Truck)
By Anita Ojeda
You might wonder what chasing the FedEx truck has to do with reluctant readers and how the two events relate (and who wants their kid chasing delivery trucks, anyway?). Let me explain.
I teach at a private school where 95% of the students would be classified as ‘reluctant readers’—mostly because about 95% of them have never owned their own book nor do they have access to a public library. Reading happens at school. From textbooks. And when I survey my students at the beginning of the school year, 95% of the new students have never read a chapter book in their life (I say new students, because kids who have had me as their teacher have read a lot of books—including chapter books).
I should mention that the average 12th grade student reads at the 4th or 5th grade level—no wonder they read reluctantly! Textbooks authors don’t generally work to make textbooks scintillating, nor do they work to keep the vocabulary easy.
Here’s what we do at our school to turn our reluctant readers into kids who chase the delivery vans (more on that in a moment).
1. Know their levels. Every student takes a reading test within a few hours of registering at our school. Once we know the student’s reading level, we have the student memorize their ZPD (Zone of Proximal Development—or about 1.2 grades lower than their tested reading level to about 1.5 grades above their reading level). The ZPD represents the success zone for reading. I explain that I can’t shoot a free throw and ask students where I should start on the court. “Under the basket!” they suggest. Bingo! For students who don’t like to read (or don’t read on grade level), they need to start ‘under the basket’—or with easy-to-read and understand picture books.
2. Hold them accountable. Our school uses a program called Accelerated Reader—the company has thousands and thousands of reading comprehension tests for everything from Good Night, Moon to Mutiny on the Bounty. Students read a book, take a multiple-choice comprehension test on the computer, and receive immediate reward in the form of an instantly scored test. We celebrate immediately with a high-five and a sticker on the progress chart. Accelerated Reader wins the contest in best-of-product, hands down—but it’s a paid service. BookAdventure.com works well and doesn’t cost money.
You can find the remaining eight tips over at Anita’s blog (and discover why chasing delivery vans is a good thing).
Anita Ojeda teaches English and Language Arts to 7th-12th graders. In her spare time, she blogs at Blessed, but Stressed a safe haven where caregivers and worn out people can relax, learn and be inspired. She doesn’t consider herself particularly brave, but she recently wrote about her youngest daughter’s struggle with mental health issues for the #write31days challenge in October.
Now back to our linkup. First a personal note and news about guest hosting.
On a personal note. I fell behind on my Thanksgiving series because of family illness which is still ongoing and could be serious. Can you pray for my husbands that tests he is undergoing turn out negative, and he feels better soon. Thanks for your support. I plan to finish the series this week, so stayed tuned.
We have had great response to our request for guest posters for December. We almost have the schedule filled. Let me know if you want to guest post. I can start filling the January schedule with post about favorite winter books or creative post about learning, writing, reading, or blogging related to winter. If you would like us to consider you, you can email me at marykatbpcsc45 @ gmail (dot) com.
Now let’s ….
Last Week’s Top Clicked Post!
Leslie frequents our top-clicked list. I love her top five. I have to read two of them now! Be sure to check this post out!
We actually have a tie! Also most-clicked is :
By Shantala at SHANAYA TALES
Shantala has been joining us a lot lately, and I love her contributions to the community. Her reviews are detailed and honest. She also writes about parenting and everyday living on her blog. Be sure to check it out. 🙂
Want to be the next to be featured! Just link up a post and if you are read the most, we will feature you. Also please make sure you link back to us so others will know about our link up and join in. We try to make it worth your while to linkup with us by promoting your posts across our social media networks. We also pin your posts to our Pinterest Board!
Now, it is time to link up to the Literacy Musing Mondays hop! You will have until Saturdays at 12 p.m. now to link up! So come back often.
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Linking up with these hops this week: Social Butterfly Sunday, #LifeGivingLinkup; Inspire Me Mondays at Create with Joy, Inspire Me Monday at Angie Ryg,Mama Moments Monday, Motivation Mondays, Good Morning Mondays, Inspire Me Mondays at Table for 7, Mommy Monday Blog Hop, Tell Me a True Story Blog Party, #Words with Winter Linkup, The Book Nook – Blog Party For Book Lovers!, Totally Terrific Tuesdays, Women with Intention Wednesdays, What to Read Wednesdays, Mom’s Library, A Little R &R Wednesday’s linkup, Kid Lit Blog Hop, Booknificent Thursdays, Cozy Reading Spot, and TGI Saturdays.