Thursday, July 18, 2013

Summer Reading Check-In

It's summertime, but that doesn't mean you can put your books aside until school starts! Our 4th-12th graders all have summer reading to do and we hope they've gotten much of it done already!

I (Krista) decided to do a little Summer Reading Check-In with three of our English teachers, Mrs. Wainscott (4th-5th Grade), Mrs. Hudson (6th-7th Grade), and Mrs. Gilbert (8th-12th Grade) to make sure they've been hitting the books this summer!

If you were sent to a deserted island for the rest of your life and could take only ONE book (not including the Bible, you can’t say The Bible! :), what book would you take?

Mrs. Wainscott:  I think I would take a book on joy.  I’m assuming I would get tired of being there and being alone so I think a book on finding joy in your circumstance would be helpful.  Something by Joyce Meyers, I’m sure she has a title on finding joy in the midst of adversity!

Mrs. Hudson:  To Kill a Mockingbird -- or Bill Cosby's Time Flies (I think laughing is a necessity!)

Mrs. Gilbert:  Is it cheating to take my Kindle, which is loaded with goodies? I mean, that’s really just ONE book, technically, right? If  I really had to choose just ONE book, I would probably take Kate Chopin’s TheAwakening because it is rich and beautifully written.

Who is your favorite book character? Do you think you’re like this person in any way?

Mrs. Wainscott:  I really can’t identify a favorite character specifically but I do have a character type that I seem to be drawn to, that is the “Underdog”.  I seem to always be cheering in literature and real life for those that seem to have a tough road to travel.  I very much identify with this character trait.  I am always championing the students, children, and people in general that may need an extra boost or even just a kind word of encouragement.

Mrs. Hudson:  Jonas :-) Or Atticus........... I want to be!

Mrs. Gilbert:  My favorite book character is Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird. I love him because he is wise, honest, and always does what is right. I *hope* that I am like him, or am becoming more like him, because he is a wonderful parent.

Who in your life has nurtured your love of reading? 

Mrs. Wainscott:  My mom is the person in my life that really got me excited about reading.  Still to this day we share titles we have enjoyed and talk about books we are currently reading. 

Mrs. Hudson:  My high school English teacher, Mrs. Smith...There were times I thought I was dying, but I didn't :-) And, as a result of all her "torture," I came to LOVE  literature...and to love torturing my students for the greater good.  LOL

Mrs. Gilbert:  First, of course, my mother read to me and took me to the library, and encouraged me to open my imagination to the new worlds that existed in books. My mom didn’t (and still doesn’t) love to read, but she understood how important it was for me to reach beyond small town life and see the bigger world. Beyond my mom, I had many wonderful teachers who introduced great books in my life. My second grade teacher, Mrs. Nickell, read aloud to us all the time, and I fell in love with Charlotte’s Web and TheBoxcar Children. My 7th grade teacher, Ms. Bishop, and the school librarian, Mrs. Stewart, would squirrel away books for me and make sure I was always up on the latest in what was new and exciting. My aunt Nell also introduced me to different writers and shared and discussed books with me.

Why is reading during the summer months important? 

Mrs. Wainscott:  I am a strong advocate for reading during summer months.  Research states that students can loss 2-3 months of progress if reading is neglected.  That is like going back to February or March in the school year.  That seems like such a waste to me.

Mrs. Hudson:  It's always important.  That's all I have to say about that.

Mrs. Gilbert:  Oh, my! Reading is ALWAYS important. In the summer, we should be reading for pleasure more since we have fewer school obligations. I have seen so many studies that prove that the more kids read, the better they perform on standardized tests because they increase their reading speed and vocabulary. Simply reading 20 minutes a day can have a monumental impact. If we stop doing that in the summer, it takes weeks to rebuild our “reading muscles.” However, if we maintain or even increase reading, the rewards are big!

If you could add one more book to your Summer Reading List for your students, what would it be?

Mrs. Wainscott:  Due to the fact that 4/5 grade do not have specific books to read during the summer I would just encourage them to read books that they didn’t have time to read during the school year but really wanted to.  Also to pursue books about their passions such as baseball, dance, horses, etc.

Mrs. Hudson:  War and Peace or Moby Dick (tee hee hee)

Mrs. Gilbert:  Since I don’t pick the books that my students read in the summer, I can’t answer this well. But, I can say, that I think everyone should read just one more book!!!!!!!  :)

What books are YOU reading this summer?  

Mrs. Wainscott:  I have had a delightful time this summer reading.  I have read so many good books.  Here’s some of the ones I’ve read so far:  Rules, Becoming Naomi Leon, The KiteRunner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, And The Mountains Echoed, Callthe Midwife, The Glass Castle, and am currently reading Stolen Innocence.

Mrs. Hudson:  This has been a summer or re-reading some of my favoritesI Know Why the Caged BirdSings, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, and The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe are some of the best ones so far!! But, I've got four more weeks -- just think of all the possibilities...

Mrs. Gilbert:  I’ve read many books this summer. Some have been for school and some for fun. One book I read at the insistence of my students was Cityof Bones by Cassandra Clare. Two enthusiastic thumbs DOWN! I wouldn’t recommend it. I also read Same Sun Here by one of my favorite Kentucky authors, Silas House. It may be more geared toward 5th and 6th graders, but I loved it. I also liked The Wednesday Sisters by Meg Waite Clayton, which is more of “mom” book, but it was about a group of friends who wrote together over the years, and how it helped them deal with difficult times. I still have a number of titles on my “to-read” list…and time is running out!!!

Thank you, teachers, for this very informative reading discussion! :) Students, we can't wait to hear what you thought of your summer reading! Be sure to stop by the TFCA Library when you back to class!

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