Every child can find a joy in reading, if they can just find that one book. As a child I hated reading until a teacher introduced me to fantasy. One book and I was hooked. Now as a reading teacher, my goal is simple...help students find the one book that hooks them on reading.
My school is Title 1 and my students' families often struggle financially.
My students come from a variety of backgrounds. Though a few do come from a literary rich home life, many of my students do not have books of their own at home. Some students live with grandparents, other relatives or are in foster homes. Many of my students are bilingual, dyslexic, or learning disabled. There are many different obstacles that discourage my students from being readers. I want to help them find books that they love so that they will seek out reading for pleasure.
My students need to improve their understanding of different genres by having 30 copies of a dystopian novel and informational books on Anime and Steampunk styles. I have found that my students do not gravitate to science fiction, though they have some interest in dystopian science fiction. Even then, they rarely choose books outside of the popular dystopian books like The Hunger Games or Maze Runner. When I decided to search for the perfect science fiction book to read with my students, I came upon another obstacle. Most dystopian novels were not completely appropriate for my 5th graders, so I have done quite a bit of research. At a book fair I stumbled upon the perfect book, The Expeditioners. I personally could not put this book down. It combines preteen adventure, a dystopian future, and steampunk fashions with Japanese anime style illustrations. My students will LOVE this book! We will use this book to work on a variety of reading skills including: plot, character development, and imagery. More than anything else, I hope students begin to search out books like this to read for pleasure.
A single book can change the way a student looks at reading.
I know that students with obstacles like mine often begin to dislike school. This can lead to dropping out of school. As adult citizens, they will need to use reading skills. If I can make it entertaining now, then reading will not be a chore. I want to help my students discover their own, personal love of reading and this book will do just that.
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