My students come from several different towns to create our diverse classroom. They come for our magnet theme of science and technology, and for many language arts is not their favorite class. They would much rather spend time in a science lab.
Their curiosity and creativity in the science lab is an asset in the language arts class, although they don't often realize this.
They ask great questions and explore the world around them.
However, getting some of them to read independently is often a challenge. Luckily, as a kindergarten through grade 8 school, we have the opportunity to engage in Book Buddies. My 7th-grade students match up with younger students to participate in Buddy Reading.
One successful way to engage reluctant readers is to pair them with younger students. They take pride in their leadership and are more likely to practice text to impress their buddy. They build a relationship over time, as my 7th graders meet with their "buddy" to read them a story throughout the school year.
As a result, my 7th graders practice their fluency skills and serve as role models, while our younger students gain an older friend who shows them that reading is cool.
Our Book Buddy program has increased the fluency skills and interest in reading for many of our older students. It also has helped enhance our school community by building relationships across the grade levels. By donating to their project, you are providing our Book Buddy program with fresh new titles that will also address social-emotional learning.
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