The statistics don’t lie. According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), the average reading score is declining and the students seem to be more disengaged with the act of reading. This is not good news at all because if the trend keeps its descent, in a few years’ time we will see a strong lack of reading skills.
If you do not want your students to be part of this trend, it is time to act now. Fostering and promoting independent reading and guided reading is the best way to ensure that the next generation will keep the educational standards as high as possible.
The problem is that one thing that the students hate is completing their study guides. I admit they can be so boring at times and in many cases, they do not add a lot to their overall reading comprehension skills. This is why you need engaging and challenging independent reading activities that will stimulate the students to look at book in a totally new perspective.
5. Dust jacket
Creating a book jacket or a dust jacket is the best way to combine knowledge about the book with interesting graphic elements. A good dust jacket format should contain a short summary of the book, some biographical date about the author and some short reviews or recommendations from the readers.
4. Comic strip
For the students that love comic books, it is an amazing opportunity to transform a book that they may find boring into an exciting adventure. You can provide a ready-made template for younger students or you can encourage the older students to make their own unique creations. They can choose a scene from the book which they love best and turn it into a wonderful reading adventure.
3. Coffee Shop Conversations
Taking two of the characters of a book and placing them in an imaginary coffee shop is an intriguing way to personalize the reading activity. The students can imagine a dialogue over a coffee between the characters, a dialogue that would reveal a lot about the deeper understanding of the character construction process.
2. Emailing your favorite character
Imagine your favorite character is a modern-day person who has an email. The students get to send an email to that character in which they either praise him or criticize him. The fun part is that they also need to write the reply. It is such an interesting activity that brings older books to a contemporary context.
The popular notion of Bookstagraming can be used by your students in order to imagine what other books their favorite characters would read. This is an excellent way to make connections between various books and can lead to more independent reading ideas and books.
There are certainly more bookish challenges to boost your independent reading activity. Which are the ones that you use in class? REPLY below and tell us more!