Building a Reading Culture: Curate Reading Life

The March addition of “Educational Leadership” focuses on reading as the core skill of learning. With many useful articles it is a good resource to reflect on our instruction and task design of reading variety of texts. The article, “Taming the Wild Text: A Top – 10 List of Strategies to Help the Struggling Reader Become Fierce, Unafraid, and Strong” explores actions to promote a reading culture. What are the best practices to nurture a love for reading, especially with kids to struggle on a daily basis? One strategy is to teach students to curate their own reading lives. It discusses how to empower students to choose what they read, to see themselves as readers. One strategy is to curate their own reading life. Destiny Quest provides a computerized data base for kids to save their book covers into “have read, and “want to read” book shelves. This can be shared and celebrated by befriending teachers and peers in Destiny Quest. Also, by providing a link to Destiny Quest in teacher wordpress blogs; students can have 24 hour access to pre-select books for library period by placing a ‘hold’ on books that interest them (which can be searched by reading level), and share their bookshelves with parents. In Mrs. Tonner’s grade 5 class, students who read a book they really enjoyed can write a  brief reflection on why the enjoyed the book – and Mrs. Tonner places the book on “Shelfari” in her word press site allowing other students access to new book titles that have been peer reviewed and approved. Students also share memorable quotes of books they have read,  in their own voice and through their personal avatars. As noted in the article, “What will it take for such readers to experience the joy of reading? Getting to joy is important because the prize of reading competence comes at great cost” to many students .  How do you engage reluctant readers and build a reading culture?

1. Ally, Pam. (2012, March) Taming the Wild Text. Educational Leadership, Vol. 69, 21.

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