Have you thought about using a digital bookshelf with your students?
What makes you excited to be a reader? Is it the feeling of a fresh, new book in your hands? Or maybe the smell of entering a bookstore early in the morning? For some, excitement comes from seeing a list of all the books they’ve read, either digitally or on their bookshelf. Having that documentation can make a person feel both accomplished and motivated as a reader.
Now, when it comes to our students, what makes them excited to be readers? Some kids are enthusiastic readers. Others are indifferent. Some only complete reading when they absolutely have to, and even then, only maybe.
While we don’t have a magic solution to get all students to fall into that first category of being enthusiastic readers, one of the best ways to encourage reading is through peer recommendation of reading materials – no matter how many times you tell students a book is great, they are always more likely to pick it up when the recommendation comes from a classmate or friend.
To help facilitate this sharing of titles and recommendations, I created a free Digital Bookshelf. It is a fun and easy way for students to not only record what they read but also share these titles with other students.
How does a digital bookshelf work?
The Digital Bookshelf is a Google Slides resource that can be shared with and filled in by each of your students. These slides each have a digital bookshelf where students can proudly display the books they are reading.
As they read different books, students will add pictures of the titles of those books – either one they have taken themselves or one they got off the Internet.
This running log of titles can be kept for the duration of your class or even longer and makes remembering titles and sharing them with classmates simple.
In this Digital Bookshelf, you will find:
- One editable Google Slides stack that can be shared with all of your students for each to edit individually.
- Simple, editable directions for students.
Download this Digital Bookshelf for FREE when you sign up for my email list. When you sign up, I’ll send the Digital Bookshelf directly to your email, and you’ll be on your way toward gaining more enthusiastic readers in your classroom. If you’re already on the email list, you can find this resource in the Free Resource Library.
What are some additional ways I can get my students excited about reading?
Becoming a reader isn’t something that will happen overnight, especially for students who are not very interested in books to begin with. But there are some things you, as a teacher, can do to help your students become enthusiastic about reading.
- Create a cozy reading corner in the classroom with comfortable pillows and soft lighting.
- Let students choose their own books from various genres and topics that interest them. Use these book lists to help you find books they might be interested in.
- Organize book clubs where students can discuss their favourite books with their peers. Have a monthly book club and promote a different genre each month.
- Plan interactive reading activities like dramatic readings or character role plays. This Christmas Truce of 1914 media unit has a readers’ theatre your students will find interesting and engaging.
- Invite authors or local community members to visit the classroom and share their love for reading.
- Set up a reading challenge with rewards or incentives for reaching certain goals.
- Incorporate technology by using e-books or online reading platforms.
- Connect reading to real-life experiences by assigning books related to current events or students’ hobbies. Using non-fiction articles can be a great way to get your students reading.
- Create a reading buddy system where older or more advanced students read with and mentor younger students.
- Start a classroom library where students can borrow books to take home.
- Share book recommendations and reviews with students to pique their curiosity. Use these pre-made book talks to get some book recommendation ideas.
- Celebrate reading achievements.
- Introduce graphic novels and comics as an alternative reading option.
- Organize field trips to libraries or local bookstores.
- Host a book-themed party or event to celebrate the joy of reading.
- Try this Book-Themed Digital Escape Room with your students to bring the excitement back to reading.
It might sound challenging to facilitate a love of reading in your students, but it’s not impossible. With the right mindset and the right tools, such as this digital bookshelf, you’ll be off to a roaring start.
Additionally, if you love this Digital Bookshelf, be sure to check out the following resources:
- Digital Reading Check-Ins: This set of digital products includes the Digital Bookshelf, as well as four other digital check-ins, which are great for the Language Arts classroom.
- Pre-Made Book Talks for Middle and High School Teachers: These pre-made book talks are great for when you don’t have the time to read all of the books but still want to recommend diverse reads to your students or reads that help them become more widely read.
- Lit Launch Middle School Reading Engagement Workshop: Lit Launch is an online workshop that will help teachers transform their reading lessons in just 3 hours. Teachers will learn how to craft engaging lessons that help students develop a love of reading. Teachers can work at their own pace and complete the workshop as time permits. Use the code LITLAUNCH50 at checkout to get 50% off the workshop price.
Get your students just as excited as you are when it comes to reading, and have them use this handy, easy-to-use digital bookshelf. Not only will they be eager to share their reads with their peers, but they’ll have the added excitement and motivation to read once they see their shelves filling up.
Grab your FREE Digital Bookshelf today!