Instill a Love of Reading In Your Classroom
FUN FACT! Research has shown that kids love to read for TWO main reasons:
- FOR FUN: Students have reported that reading transports them to another world that they get to create using their imagination. Next to aerobic exercise, reading is the most amazing workout for your brain!
- FOR FACT: Students have also stated that reading gives them knowledge. Whether they are learning new vocabulary, new concepts, or a how-to-do project, reading helps to build essential skills they will use their entire lives.
- Did you know that reading also REDUCES STRESS by lowering your heart rate??
These 3 factors should encourage teachers everywhere to make the most of their classroom libraries!
Follow these 4 Tips Below and you’ll be well on your way to making your classroom library positively irresistible to your students!
- Create an Enchanting Environment. The goal in designing an enchanting environment for your classroom library should be to make students feel a sense of excitement and wonder simply by looking at it.
- What colors are being used? How do these colors make me feel? (Read About Colors and Their Psychological Meanings Here)
- Is there a theme?
- Are there chairs, cushions, pillows, and rugs that all say, “Come get cozy and get lost in a good book?”
- What is the lighting of your reading nook like? Is your theme more of a bright, outside feel where you have all white light? Is your reading nook suggesting more of a homey feel where warm lighting lamps are needed?
- How are your books organized? Is your library system easily accessible from a “grab and go” and a “returning” point?
These are all essential questions to ask yourself when creating that “irresistibly enchanting” atmosphere for your classroom library space.
Check out these real-life examples!
If you are looking to create or redesign your classroom library, these two places offer wonderful inspiration!
- Pinterest Board: https://pin.it/ih5me2hvapmvsv
- Instagram Tag: https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/classroomlibrary/
- Say Hello to Book Buddies!
- Add what I call a, “charm feel” to your reading nook with Book Buddies!
- Keep a Book Buddy Basket (Grab the Labels Here) somewhere in your classroom library.
My students absolutely ADORED their Book Buddies! They loved to snuggle their Book Buddies while they read their books silently.
Sometimes, I would even walk by and hear my kiddos reading out loud quietly to their Book Buddy (YAY for those reading fluency skills being practiced so naturally!).
When it came to buying my Book Buddies, I loved finding huge stuffed animals, but any sweet looking stuffed animals will do just fine. I typically found the really big ones (shown in picture above) on sale right after Valentine’s Day.
- Play Hide and Seek Bookworm – A Library Game!
- Get your students excited about reading!
Students will love to know that while they are reading, they are also secretly looking for a bookworm. I designed this library game with the intention of it keeping up library engagement all year long.
The duration of the game can of course be up to the teacher as it is a completely low-maintenance game. This library game requires very little prep work and upkeep on the teacher’s part, and students will never get tired of it!
This game also comes with the cutest little Bookworm Reports that your kiddos will LOVE to practice their writing skills on (because it involves a prize!).
- Give your students TIME to enjoy reading.
- The school day is chaotic.
- Students need a designated time during the day to enjoy their classroom library.
- An easy way to provide them with this opportunity is to incorporate a Read-to-Self time (part of the Daily 5 Literacy Framework).
Last year, I rotated my students daily (in their groups of 3-4) through a Read-to-Self station using our classroom library.
Not only did each and every one of my students receive structured time to enjoy our classroom library, I saw their love for reading grow throughout the year. Our little library became everyone’s favorite place to go during break times!
If you follow these 4 tips, your students won’t be able to resist using your classroom library!