I’ve discovered that my fifth grade friends love talking – shocker! During independent reading time, I eliminate social talking, but I do promote ‘book talk.’ Over the past few days I have watched my friends ‘open up’ about their reading. They have been sharing quotes with their friends, pushing books into each other’s faces when they really need to share a part of the book, and have even been making book recommendations. While DRAing, I heard “Hey, once you finish Dog Tags, you should really read this book [A True Patriot]. It’s kind of like your but it’s about war written in a diary.” *swoon my teacher heart*
My students will have a black/white copy of the bubbles, and will fill their quotes/blurbs in for homework (if they choose this assignment). I’ll review the blurbs, mat a few a week (after the kids pick the paper color), and put them on display. I am SO excited to see this in action. Students will be getting book recommendations from each other, be practicing reviewing books, as well as, be learning to write short and powerful paragraphs!
Plus, I think this will be a motivator for some of my friends who have trouble finishing books…because you certainly can’t review a book until you complete it! Plus, who does not love being a star. 🙂
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These are awesome! What a great idea. When I taught 5th grade my students created podcasts to talk about the books they read and to suggest (or not) it to a peer. The students were in groups of 4 and each talked for about a minute. The first person always got the "show" started with a quick intro of the "show" and the final person closed it. They kids learned about editing their voice file and splicing them together. We used a program called Audacity. The podcasts were posted to our school website for others (even across the country) to hear. As a class we'd listen to them weekly when the new podcast was posted. It was a great way to hold the kids accountable for finishing at least one book a month during their independent reading and also a good way to make book recommendations for others.
Thank you so much! I absolutely love the idea of Podcasts. They would work so well, especially with all of our new technology standards! Plus, I am about any alternative to a book report. 🙂
I love the idea of the book blurbs! I do a share time on Friday mornings where the students can get up and talk to the class about the book they are reading. I am definitely going to add in your book blurbs though! I think Mikaela's idea of creating podcasts also sounds like a lot of fun!
Ohhh – I love the idea of opening the floor to 'Friday Favorites'. It would be neat to see some of my shyer friends step up and taking the 'leadership' role of guiding friends to books. Plus, with the communication standards in the Common Core ELA these would be great! Thank you, Bethany. 🙂
I love the book blurbs! I'm for sure going to use this idea in my classroom! We just talked about how we choose books today and this will go along perfectly with our launching unit! Love the idea!!! Fifth grade is such a fun and amazing grade – I love it every minute it of it! The students are a blast 🙂
Currently, I have a binder of student recommendations… it's always out and it's just a collection of books that past/soon to be present students recommend as they read. There is a form they fill out and at the end of the year will get their photos so I stick their photos on the page too so it's very "official" as my fifth graders tell me. But you could easily stick really great blurbs in a binder too to save a reference if lots of students choose that project! Love the idea!!! Love, love, LOVE!
Glad things are going well 🙂
Thanks for sharing,
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A binder is a really manageable way to do book recommendations. Plus, it would be easy to save for future years to show examples of what you expect. Thanks for sharing, Amanda!
This is a fabulous way to share books and get kids to read new things!
Thank you for sharing!
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The Polished Teacher says
Seriously you are amazing! How do you find time to fit it all in your busy schedule! Love the book blurbs!
Em Hutchison says
Love the speech bubbles! What a great idea. Thanks!!
Hoots and Hollers says
Just getting back to reading blogs after our first week of school… I absolutely love this idea and was so enthralled with reading your post that I did not even realize you used my thought bubbles (until you mentioned it). :0) So glad you could put them to such a great use! Creative and motivating!!
Sarah @ Hoots N Hollers
Haha – that's so funny! I was so grateful to find your bubbles. They are SO cute and just perfect for my kiddos. Thank you SO much for sharing. 🙂
Kaitlin Machen says
Do you have a template or guidelines that you use with the students for writing the blurb?
Time flies says
Do you have a copy of the At-Home Practice paper? I would love to see what else is on it!
Ms. D says
Do you have a copy of the At-Home Practice Paper underneath your thought bubbles? I love, love this idea and would love to see what else is on it to spice up my students' reading homework! I checked out your Teachers Pay Teachers' store and didn't see it.
April Weaver says
I would love a copy of the At-Home Practice Paper to use with my 5th Grade class.
Kelsey Hiatt says
Is there a way to get the guidelines shown for writing the book blurbs?
Connie Pederson says
My sixth graders love book blurbs as well and the Middle School Newspaper started making it a monthly feature. They love to see themselves published under “Sixth Grade Book Blurbs”. It’s a motivator!