#MustReadin2015 is a personal challenge to commit to reading books of your choice. Visit creator Carrie Gelson’s site here for more information and for links to other #MustReadin2015 book lists.
Many of my favorite professional authors have written about the power of sharing your reading life. It is critical that teachers know their students and their books well enough to put the right book in the right hand at the right time. I grew up hooked on Judy Blume, Nancy Drew, and the Hardy Boys books. While these characters and topics were enough to hook me, not every child will become a reader by reading the books that I enjoyed. Children’s literature today is far more diverse and exciting than I could have imagined back when I was helping Nancy solve the next mystery.
This year, I set a goal of reading a minimum of 100 books, which I was able to surpass. My #MustReadin2015 list included 19 titles. While I didn’t get to read all of the 19 books on my list this year, I will be sure to complete them in 2016.
Jack by Liesl Shurtliff made me wish I was back in the classroom. This is a perfect lighthearted read aloud for younger students, and older students will benefit from analyzing the author’s craft. Liesl merges two classic tales to create an original version of Jack’s story. Readers also meet familiar characters such as Tom Thumb and Thumbelina. Even the old woman who lived in a shoe makes an appearance.
When 12-year-old Amira’s village in Sudan is attacked, life as she knows it is changed forever. Amira’s broken family travels to a refugee camp, where she must learn how to adjust to a world ravaged by war. Amira receives a red pencil, which signifies the return of her voice and her desire to pursue an education. Andrea Davis Pinkney shares an important message through this novel in verse.
The most powerful professional book I read this year was Reading Nonfiction: Notice & Note Stances, Signposts, and Strategies by Kylene Beers and Bob Probst. This book is a must-read for ALL teachers, including those explicitly teaching reading and those teaching students to read in the content areas. I can’t do this book justice in one paragraph, but expect a full review soon.
Many of my #MustReadin2015 titles have their own blog posts. You can find them here:
- All the Bright Places, All the Answers, Caminar, & Gifts from the Enemy
- How it Went Down
- No More Independent Reading Without Support
I’m currently making my #MustReadin2016 list, and I’d love to hear your suggestions! The book is in your court…
(Thank you Jen at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee & Ricki at Unleashing Readers for hosting It’s Monday! What are you Reading? Readers across the blogging community connect their latest reading experiences, opening new possibilities for sharing the impact of books on our lives. )