The rewards of reading are immense.
As teachers, it’s your task to develop the love of reading among your students and foster a reading culture in your classroom and in the school.
Reading enhances communication skills and reduces stress. However, there are still students who cringe at the thought of reading. How do teachers create readers? Here are some tools and strategies to guide teachers:
1. Give students a choice
"In schools that have success with their pupils’ reading, teachers read, talk with enthusiasm and recommend books, the results of which are seen not only in test results but also in an enthusiasm for reading which extends beyond the classroom." — Excellence in English, Ofsted, 2011
It is important to give the children the right to choose what they read. Show your student why reading is important. Sharing and reading books to students should be a task for all teachers in the school and not just the English teachers.
Whenever they encounter a new book, encourage children to:
read it again
mistake a book for real life
read out loud
2. Provide access to materials
Try to provide your students with access to a pool of reading materials. Create opportunities for them to start reading. Here are some suggestions:
Online Ebook sites
3. Independent Reading
A powerful predictor of vocabulary is reading. It plays a key role in shaping the mind. Children develop comprehension, general knowledge, and cognitive structures.
Make time each day for your students to read. Encourage them to read when they’re available. These can be any of the following periods:
when they have finished class work early
at various waiting times during the day, on the bus.
4. Reading Challenge
Start the fun with a challenge for your students to read. Encourage them to read more books by recording their reading mileage. This just proves that a small amount of reading can make a huge impact.
Try to make at least 3 to 6 minutes a day to read.
Here’s a chart to help you track your student’s reading mileage. Imagine if they do this regularly, how much knowledge they will acquire!
Minutes per day
Words read per year
5. Reading Mileage
You can do the following to track your students’ mileage:
Reading mileage challenges are good incentives as students aim for milestones such as 'the 50-page club' or 'the 200-page club'
Choose relevant and engaging titles for 'school assigned reading'. It helps if you consult with your school librarian and teaching colleagues for new suggestions
Set up a class blog for book reviews by students
Share relevant websites and blogs with students such as Goodreads and our Create readers blog.
Reading logs that include a simple record of a title and rating work well. Reading logs shouldn’t require too many details
Encourage reading across the curriculum
Identify particular reading strategies needed for different subject areas
Furthermore, here are a few guidelines to encourage your students to start reading:
Make them realize that books can be a refreshing and rewarding alternative to TV, movies, shopping, or hanging out with friends
Help them discover, or remember, the pleasures of reading
Require and encourage outside, elective reading, and steer them toward good Young Adult books.
Help them connect with what they read, and nudge them to works related to what they’ve just read, or, if they’re in a reading rut, nudge them into something different
Read and talk to your children and their classmates about what you read
Read some of what they read
Read aloud in class, and give them time to read in class