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teacherwriter's Message:

I'm thinking about adding book boxes for individual students this year. (I've done a combo Daily 5/guided reading plan for a couple of years, but never assembled book boxes.) FYI, I'm in 3rd. Questions:
How many items do you put in each box?
What assortment do you put in the boxes?
How often do you permit book shopping? My classroom library is large, but I'm a little worried that I still might not have enough to sustain an entire year's worth of book boxes.
We use AIMSWeb and Lexile at our school. Do you stock the boxes entirely with books that match the student's level?

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Discussion Review (newest messages first)
globalgirl 11-01-2015 06:05 PM

I teach kinder, but even with my kiddos they stock their own boxes.

Since most of my littles can't read at all yet, they are stocking with picture books. I limit them to ten books because 1. That's what fits in their boxes, and 2. That's a good number to count to.

I also have my kids keep a little bag in their book boxes that contains their guided reading books from the last two weeks (we use a-z, so they are printed copies). They take them home for a weekend, then bring them back and use them at school for fluency practice.

For older kids, I might have them keep five books in their book boxes, since they would be longer, or one novel and three shorter books.

I do book shopping once a week, either on Friday or Monday, depending on when they have time. If my kids were more independent, I would probably let them go twice a week. You could also make this something they can do if they finish an activity early, or while waiting for their bus, or in the morning. That way they can change books as they are ready.

I don't have a huge class library, but the kids don't mind reading books multiple times. In the grades above mine, the teachers also have the kids put their books from the school library in their book boxes.

The Daily 5 has a lesson on "good fit" books that you might want to check out. This teaches kids to find books that are reading level appropriate, as well as interesting too them.
If you only let them read books on their lexile level, what if they really want to read about a non-fiction topic, but the only book is below their level?
You might instead have a rule where they have to choose two or three books on their lexile level and then can choose two based on interest.

vttraveler 09-10-2015 06:47 PM

I ask them to have a chapter book, a magazine, a poetry book, a picture book, and a nonfiction book. Having an assortment means they never are without something to read. They may shop before class begins, during library time, and if they finish snack early. I teach them to choose "just right" books that are the right fit. I use the shoe example. If they like a certain genre or author I'll make suggestions if they ask.

anansi 09-10-2015 04:41 PM

I've even seen some teachers build in "Book shopping" as one of their D5 choices once a week. Once we pass the first week, my students always stock their own book boxes, although I may guide them towards something now and again.

MollyDogsMom 07-23-2015 11:52 AM

I teach 3rd grade too. We have a staggered start time every morning (kids allowed in class 15 minutes prior to the bell) so kids book shop at this time. Last year they had their library books and from my class library and had no problems. This year my room changed and we had use of a large shared leveled library in our commons area.

I teach my students to have a purpose as well as thinking of the level. Sometimes kids want a certain book below level to work on fluency or because it fit with research. As long as they have some on level and others for a clear purpose, I don't worry. I ask for a variety of fiction and nonfiction to be in their box. The only time I place books in is if it is for a specific assignment or a previous read class poem or even national geo magazines.

k28 07-21-2015 06:55 AM

I also do "Book Shopping" in Kindergarten.

It takes LOTS of modeling, but it is worth it.

They choose from some easy readers, some library books, and assorted books.


Would love to know how often others go "shopping."

smannes 07-21-2015 05:32 AM

I teach third also. I require my students to have 2-3 books in their box at all times. They are assigned one day a week to book shop. The only time I "stock" their box is the first day of school. Other than that, I teach about finding just right books and they choose books to put in their box. Students will put books in their box using books from home, the school library (if you have one), and the public library. You should not be picking out their books for the whole year. I have an decent amount of books in my classroom, wouldn't say large, and I've never had an issue with having enough books.

teacherwriter 07-21-2015 02:38 AM

I'm thinking about adding book boxes for individual students this year. (I've done a combo Daily 5/guided reading plan for a couple of years, but never assembled book boxes.) FYI, I'm in 3rd. Questions:
How many items do you put in each box?
What assortment do you put in the boxes?
How often do you permit book shopping? My classroom library is large, but I'm a little worried that I still might not have enough to sustain an entire year's worth of book boxes.
We use AIMSWeb and Lexile at our school. Do you stock the boxes entirely with books that match the student's level?




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