Students should read for at least 20 minutes for 5 days each week. They will have a chance to do this on Tuesday and Thursday mornings in Study Hall, so they should also be reading at least three days at home each week.
INDEPENDENT READING Occasionally throughout the year, I will assign reading from a class novel, but for the majority of the year, students will read a novel of their choice. Students are welcome to checkout a book from my class library, from the school library, or any other method that works for them. It is important to note the I do not monitor the content of the novels that they choose for independent reading, so parents should check with their students about the books they have selected.
While reading has many academic benefits (see below), I also want them to grow in their "love" of reading throughout the year. This is why their independent reading does not have any work attached to it, like annotations, reading logs, or book reports. Just the time spent reading a book of choice will continue to grow their reading skills and their vocabulary, while also (hopefully) being an enjoyable experience since they are reading about something that interests them. We will work on specific reading skills, like analyzing the craft and structure of a text of making inferences about literary elements, during our "academic" reading time together in class.
CLASS LIBRARY: I try to keep our class library stocked with a wide-range of books from different genres, topics, and authors so that all of my students can find books that they find interesting. I am always trying to grow our class library because kids are more likely to read when they have quick, easy access to high-interest books. If you would like to donate to our class library, we would greatly appreciate it! We accept used books that you no longer want to keep on your shelves at home or you can buy high-interest books from "Mrs. Brink's Book Wish List" on Amazon.
If students don’t consistently read independently (about 20 minutes for five days each week), they will fall about ½ grade level behind in reading EACH year 15 min/day is the magic number in accelerating positive gains in reading achievement, but 30 min/day has the greatest gain
Students who read less than 15 min/day learn 12 million less words than students who read 30 min/day
More than half of reading comprehension can be connected to depth and breadth of vocabulary knowledge
Reading has been shown to increase empathy and emotional intelligence
Reading develops stronger analytical skills and improves your overall focus and concentration