I teach at a large urban public school. Our school is a Title I school in which all of the students receive free breakfast and lunch. The students that I teach mainly come from low-income backgrounds but have a voracious appetite for learning. My students also come to me with varying skill levels; some of the students I have are above a seventh-grade reading level, but many of them fall below where they should be for their age. It would be easy for them to get frustrated and give up.
My students have persevered through the challenging academic coursework and eagerly await their next assignment.
Instead of asking, "Can we have a break?" they ask, "Can we read a book?" They have a love of reading and learning that needs to be fostered and grown to teach them to enjoy the journey of learning rather than the end result.
At the end of the day, my students know that they can walk into school and feel cared for. Regardless of where they are coming from, they know that they will be treated fairly, listened to, supported, and feel important.
My students have been chomping at the bit to read some interesting novels in class. I recently surveyed them and asked them what they would like to do in class that is also educational. They said that they love reading and discussing novels in class. They told me that they especially enjoy reading novels that have an accompanying film that they can watch when they're done reading.
My students have a love of reading, and I want to foster that as an English teacher.
Finding literature that interests and resonates with the reader, is so important in middle school. I hope to make lifelong readers out of my students. Having interesting novels, like The Giver, is a great way to do that.
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