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August 10, 2016

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Every month, TAB editor Kristin will be sharing her thoughts on five titles from our… Read More

June 1, 2016

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Sharing the Journey: Reading Aloud in the Classroom

Today we’re pleased to share a guest post from one of our former Teacher Advisors about using the fifth grade Book of the Month as a classroom read-aloud. Check out the bottom of this post for more information about the Book of the Month program.

Hi, my name is Steve Wyborney. I’m a teacher and instructional coach from Oregon, and I helped create the free teacher guide for Three Times Lucky, the January Book of the Month selection for fifth grade.

This Newbery Honor–winning book is a fun, witty mystery with a charming narrator that takes place in a small community. Those factors lend it power as a read-aloud in a classroom setting.

Few classroom experiences compare with the unifying experience of traveling through a rich, well-chosen read-aloud. You know the feeling. You turn the page and step with your class into a story. Something in the experience draws the students in and you can actually feel the room become calm. Perhaps it is the particular title you have selected. Possibly your students are detecting your passion and don’t want to miss out on something wonderful. Or maybe it is the pure power of story.

You also notice that there is a safety in story, an invitation to wonder and a freedom to ask questions. You understand the power of pausing and the importance of wondering aloud. Your decisions as you read the story will be many: How do I read a character’s voice? When do I insert a question? How should I ask my students to respond to the story?

I would like to take a moment to recommend Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage for just such a classroom journey. Your class will never forget their time in Tupelo Landing, hunting for clues and finding answers to questions big and small. And each day, when it’s time to close the book—even though your students will ask you to read just a little more—the story will wait, holding the promise of shared learning, shared adventure, and shared community.As you look around the room you realize that in this moment many of the barriers have been erased, many of the differences among your students do not matter. Your selected read-aloud is becoming a shared journey, a common experience, something that everyone owns and can discuss together. The read-aloud is building your classroom community.

Wishing you a wonderful journey,

Steve Wyborney

 

 

 

*The Book of the Month Program*

When five or more students in your class order the Book of the Month in January, your class will receive a free copy of the book, a free gift for every student, and a teacher guide with reproducible activities created exclusively for Reading Club teachers.

 

 

 

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December 20, 2013