After 23 years in elementary school, I've transitioned to teaching middle school in California. I moved positions in late March and dove in feet first. I not only shifted my age group, but also the community I serve, and I've learned a few things.
- Middle school kids need a champion, a nurturer, a truth teller and a reader more than ever!
- 79% of the student body at our school is socioeconomically disadvantaged.
-A majority of my students do not identify as readers, and have limited access to relevant, high interest books.
I root my teaching in the belief that literacy lifts people out of their own experiences. It builds empathy, strengthens overall academics, and readers are shown to be more successful in life. More importantly, reluctant young adult readers need to connect with characters and events in books.
Read alouds unite and create culture in a classroom. They are essential at any grade, but often forgotten as students get older.
No child is ever too old to be read to!
When building and maintaining a relevant classroom library, I ask my readers what they want more of and what titles I should be adding. This buy in is key! I am asking for The Maze Runner books 4 and 5, and El Deafo based on these requests.
Children who immersed in a reading environment are more successful in school, lives and future careers. It is both my privilege and responsibility to cultivate curious and hearty readers.
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