School libraries are quiet havens where students can enter books to explore or escape, and while every child deserves to have that safe place in his or her school, the reality is that my students don't. I am a Language Arts teacher at a school with no library.
My students are middle schoolers at a charter school in Minnesota--or they will be, at least!
School begins in two weeks, and I found out two days ago that my school does not have a library, and only has the resources to give me a discretionary budget of $100 for a year's worth of classroom supplies. I know two things for sure: one, that my students have the RIGHT to access books that challenge and excite them, and two, that $100 is not nearly enough to help them exercise that right in my classroom.
These students will come into my middle school classroom with reading levels ranging from 1st grade to 8th grade. We have a LOT of work to do together this year to build confidence and discover that every single student can be a reading rockstar, regardless of where they are when they enter my classroom in a few weeks. Our goals for this year are to increase every single student's reading level by at least two grades, and for every student to read 30 minutes nightly for the entire school year. Realizing one goal is dependent on the other, and both are dependent on the existence of books for my students. My students need to be surrounded by books if they are to understand their importance, and have constant access to them in order to complete their reading logs every single night.
This project is a starting point for me to build a library for my students that is exciting, challenging and full.
Because of where they live, my students have grown up in a society that disenfranchises them and denies them access to that which many of us take for granted: an excellent education. Tell my students that you believe in their goals, and let them know that reading is their RIGHT, by supporting our classroom library.
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