[library-media] Update on Reading Ideas/Promotions/Improvement

Jan Duane Jan_Duane@skaggscatholiccenter.org
Mon, 05 Jan 2004 12:09:02 -0700


This is the latest compilation of results from Utah.  Thanks to all of you
who have responded.  This is long but several of you said that you could no=
read the attachments.


Brad Monson
Dixon Middle School

We use SSR at Dixon Middle School. Everyday during SWELL (School Wide
Excellence in Literacy Learning) or the advisory period all of the classes
read. The teachers and staff are supposed to also (though don't always.) It
lasts for a bout 20 minutes, then Channels One and announcements come on.
It takes a while to train the kids but after a while (a few weeks at the
start of the school year) the kids get into
the habit that the class really is for quiet reading.

Factors for success (what we do and should do)

1.) A big factor in the success of it is that the principal gave each
teacher $100 or more, each year to buy books for their classroom to be put
in a SWELL library.  Each SWELL class has a small collection of books that
kids can choose from to read.  It solves the problem of kids using "I don't
got no book" as an excuse to not read.

2.) SSR in SWELL class is consistent. It is every day.

3.) SSR time is important.  This is demonstrated that when the schedule is
changed such as for assemblies, SWELL is not taken out of the schedule. It
is left in and for the full 20 minutes.  This sends a message to the kids
that Reading is very important. (We don't do this but we should)

4.) All people in the school read. Everything stops.  Kids can't go to
another class to do some activity.  I don't let kids into the library to
check out a book or to do homework.  I have found that most of the time whe=
kids try to get out of class to do home work or get a book or run a life an=
death errand (such as they left their lip gloss in their last class) it is
mainly to get out of class and be off task rather than do what they say tha=
they are going to do.

5.) There are no requirements as part of the reading, only that they read.
No book reports, no books (with in reason) disallowed. It is up to the kid.
All they have to do is read.


Bev Stout=20
Library Media Teacher
Elk Ridge Middle School
South Jordan, Utah 84095

We are in our second year of a school-wide reading program that we call DEA=
(Drop Everything and Read).   We spend at least 30 minutes of one period a
day on a rotating schedule in silent sustained reading.   For example, toda=
we read during 4th period, and our next block will be 5th period on Jan. 5,
2004.   Also, on specified days at the beginning of the DEAR period,
teachers across the curriculum present mini lessons on various reading
skills.   Our entire faculty has received a copy of I Read It, But I Don=B9t
Get It by Cris Tovani, as well as training in teaching reading skills as
part of our professional development and this will continue in the future.
The school is never quieter than during DEAR, and it=B9s amazing to see
students sitting on the floor of the gym engrossed in their books.   An
important component of the program is that each student freely chooses
his/her own reading material, as long as it is not a magazine.

Students are more interested in books here at Elk Ridge Middle, and
circulation in the media center has virtually doubled.  We=B9re hoping to see
improvement in skills and scores as well.

Here are a couple of links to information on silent sustained reading:



Jean Hagen
Granite School District

Every teacher has a 40 minutes advisory class.  20 min. is SSR.  The other
20 minutes is for Channel One and our school news broadcast.  Every teacher
is to sit in front of the class and silently read while his/her students ar=
reading.  The teachers who actually do this have had great results in havin=
their students read also.  Teachers can sign up to bring their classes to
the library during this period to check out books and have book talks with
the librarian.  Students are not allowed in the office or counseling center
during this time everyone reads


Sheree Reed
Granite School District

**  I do "book Talks" - as a teacher brings in a class and then I talk abou=
a genre and show and discuss books from that genre for the kids.

**  I pull a cart loaded with the genre that a teacher is having the
students read.  Lots of the kids will come in and get a book from the cart
for their book for English class.

**  I encourage the geography teachers to have their students read a fictio=
book about the area of the world that they are studying - or the history
teachers to have the students read a fiction book about the time period the=
are studying for that term.  I have done book talks on these - and always
pull a cart of those books.  I used to do this when I taught history and
geography and it was very successful and a wonderful way to make history or
geography come alive.

**  I constantly read the YA books so that I can talk to the students about
them and recommend ones they would enjoy.