The Book Whisperer, Chapter 6, Cutting the Teacher Strings.
Chapter 6 was a very compelling read. I’m laughing at myself here because if you’ve read this chapter then you’ll recognize my lame joke:)
But seriously it was immensely thought-provoking, the gist of it being that teachers need to take a long hard look at the traditional and so called tried and true practices around reading instruction.
Just because it’s the norm, doesn’t mean it’s worthwhile. In particular, Donalyn slams whole class novels, reading logs, incentive programs (think accelerated reader and the like), book reports, round robin reading, popcorn reading, and teaching to the test.
She even goes as far as shunning book talks, instead preferring book commercials and book reviews.
Donalyn offers well thought-out reasons for these choices and gives many viable alternatives.
Any activity that substantially replaces reading, writing, and discourse in the classroom needs to be better than the activity it replaces, and nothing, not even test prep, is better for student’s reading ability than just plain reading, day after day.
I think this quote is brilliant and couldn’t agree more!
You can read more thoughts about The Book Whisperer here.