The last week of September celebrates “Banned Book Week”. Many librarians are discussing possible activities to do with students to celebrate the classics. As a reading teacher, I feel it is important to show students and make them aware of the books that are challenged and the reasons for wanting a book banned. I also want my students to know that they have a right to read what they want and that the library can offer them access to that freedom. I think the library should help celebrate this week of September and encourage students to check out the books that cause lots of discussions. This should definitely be cleared with the principal first and the books that are highlighted should be the classics that are challenged.
Katie Farrington of New jersey, writes about books that would appeal to boys. I find boys to be more reluctant readers than girls on average. They often struggle with identifying what kinds of subjects that they are interested in. Helping them to get to that point is the first step, then the librarian needs to advertise titles that match up to their likes. Pulling books from the shelves to advertise is a great way to help students search for books to read. She provided a list of all the hits she received and she had lots of great responses. Some of the best were:
1. Graphic novels
2. Gross history books
3. Anything to do with crime solving, forensic evidence gathering, ect.
4. Almanacs, trivia books
5. Mike Lupica, John Feinstein, Tim Green, Mal Peet, and Anthony Horowitz
6. Cirque Du Freak
David Warlick wrote on his blog “2 Cents Worth” about “Reasoning Our Way” and how there is a difference between how youth of the more recent generations reason their way through problems differently than older generations. He gave examples of technology and video games where kids figure out what they need to do. I do agree that kids are great at this kind of stuff. They can get online or figure out how to do complicated but I rarely see students transferring their problem solving skills into practical uses. If they could do this, then they could really make something of themselves.
Doug Johnson on his blog, “Blue Skunk” wrote on September 27th about how teachers and coaches need to be “guides”. He defined a “guide” as “Guide a : one that leads or directs another's way b : a person who exhibits and explains points of interest ... e : a person who directs another's conduct or course of life. M-W.COM.” He applied this idea of a guide to his experience of hiking through the Grand Canyon. Some of his thoughtful connections included: 1. A guide pushes us to do things we wouldn’t normally of done. 2. Models difficult things. 3. Shows us things we might not have found. 4. Demonstrate best practices and smoothes the way. These are excellent examples of the day-to-day life of a teacher and how we interact with students. Pushing ourselves as educators to be these things for students is definitely best for students.