EVERY WEEK NIGHT ALL YEAR --- EVEN WORK DAYS? (Yes) Holidays? (your choice)
Wow--how much improvement a reader can make with just 30 - 40 minutes of daily sustained, active reading outside school! Students could be at the 90% on reading EOG but Consistency is essential.
Quality--active reading, proving your ideas with text support, with challenging materials
and Quantity-- not book hopping :-) 30 - 45 minutes every day all year, making goals and finishing several books per 9 weeks.
Helpful hints for the weekly home reading assignments:
* Choose reading material (fiction OR non-fiction) the student enjoys, including mp-3/i-pod downloadable books (Playaways), Nook, Kindle, magazines, graphic novels (cartoon-type novels), etc., books about students' hobbies or a series/author that hooks them. Variety of genres is key.
* Reading material and questions should be varied.
Challenge: Win "Book Bingo" (ask Mrs. Y. for a copy or make a board) by reading many genres (biography, mystery, science fiction, newspaper article, fantasy, realistic fiction, etc.) and varied subject matter.
This allows for EOG test practice but--even better--a broader view of literature and life.
* The reading material should be at or slightly above the student's ability level and/or with challenging themes for young adults.
** See Lexile Levels ( www.lexile.com) for ideas of book levels (keep in mind appropriate themes, vocabulary, interests).
In class, we have discussed how to choose a challenging book. Students' Lexile scores are written in their agendas. Ask to see the score and discuss book choices at home.
Remember, Lexile is only 1 piece of the reading puzzle! Themes and authors with high quality/style are also valuable criteria for choosing the right book. :-)
* Parents/Guardians, make sure students are reading 30 minutes or more every week night. When possible, discuss what your child is reading and ask some questions about it. Ask for proof from the text (a quote or a p.#/key word)
Middle Schoolers should be analyzing at a higher level and describing in more detail. Be literature detectivies.
(Marzano's thinking guide).