Today was our first day back from the holidays with the kids. I have to say, I was happy to see everyone. Though my usually spry students were unusual quiet (or was that tired?), I think they would begrudgingly admit that they were happy to be back in the saddle again, too. One of the first things we did was reconnect as a community. I wanted to know what they had been up to. Where did they go? What did they do? Who did they see? What did they read? This last question swirled around in my head throughout the holidays. Would they read if they weren’t with their community of readers?
In order to both check in with my students as well as to allow my kids an opportunity to reconnect with one another, I placed poster boards with those four questions along the four corners of the classroom. After giving the kids time to turn and talk with their table mates, they then wrote on sticky notes about their holiday break. When it came time to place the sticky notes on the poster board and do a gallery walk, my heart was aflutter. Had they read? The picture above is from my first block, but across the board, all three of my blocks HAD read! In fact, one of my most reluctant readers admitted to me that he had read on his Christmas present-a Nook.
Feeling very much relieved, we continued with the course of our day with writing our words of intent. But not before one of the many e-readers jumped up, eager to share their new present with the class on our document camera. The kids sat in silence as several of our new experts showed how the tool navigated, and then hands shot up as questions popped like popcorn throughout the room.
The rest of our day progressed as planned. As the end of the day came upon us and it was time for my class librarians to return the books to the rightful places on the shelves, I marvelled at the overflowing return basket and knew that my readers were becoming lifelong readers.