As adults, we read what we enjoy. Why then are we forcing kids to all read the same text, at the same time, with the same assessments? That’s why Adam and I came up with the Reading Bucket List—an innovative approach to self-selected texts, engaging projects, and meaningful discussions.
First and foremost, we wanted students to have choice in what they are reading! But we know as teachers that there needs to be some guidance in what we do, so that is why we created a list of 60 genres, both traditional and out-of-the-box, that students can select from. From historical fiction and autobiography to primary documents written before 1800 and comic books, there is a wide-range of texts that students can thumb through to reach their goal of 40 texts by the end of the year.
In addition to the reading, we wanted students to have the opportunity to creatively express what they have in their heads. As one fifth-grade student from North Carolina said, “I like reading, but I like being creative even more.” That is why students will create projects based on their reading from a “Project Menu.” The projects feature a wide-range of visual arts, music, performance, and writing.
In the end, we want students to love what they are reading and have a chance to talk and demonstrate what they are investing their time in. We are encouraging teachers to conference with the students once a week to talk about what they are reading. This also gives a chance for students to make text recommendations!
Included in this product are all of the tools you need to get the Reading Bucket List going:
· Letter to the Teacher
· The Reading Bucket List Implementation Guide
· The Reading Bucket List Check-off List
· Parent and Student Informational Letters
· Book Suggestions (and Book Suggestions Flip Book)
· Conferencing Question Starters
· Student Notebook Title Pages
· The Bucket List Track It Chart
· The Reading Bucket List Project Menu
· Project Rubric
· Student Conference Note Tracker
· Book Recommendation Chart
· Book Recommendation Cards
· “Quotable Moments” Cards
· Reading Bucket List Bookmarks
The reviews are in:
Mrs. Nolan "I love the reading genre list. Katy and I are both loving picking out different books to fit the genres."
Cindy Resendes: "I love being able to have real conversations about books with my students. They are bowing me away with the titles they are choosing. I thought it would be hard to get them to read and share their thoughts, but they are excited about the books they are choosing and diving into multiple genres that I know they would not have even known about, let alone actually read!! This is a great way to get my students reading and having conversations about their books."