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Christine
 
 
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Challenging High Readers
Old 11-15-2005, 06:41 PM
 
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Several of my high readers are not challenging themselves enough when reading independently. I have spoken to both the students and the parents about this, but some students still aren't challenging themselves. Any suggestions?


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Why do they need to "challenge themselves"?
Old 11-20-2005, 10:00 PM
 
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Independent reading should be just that-- independent. Do you choose books based on how difficult the words in them are? I don't, and I think it's ridiculous to expect it of children.

That being said, what higher-level choices are available in your classroom? Are there as many choices for the advanced readers as their are for the average ones?

If you want to stretch your children in their choices, you might hold five-minute book talks as described in Jim Trelease's "Read-Aloud Handbook." I have several third-grade girls who would never have opened the first Molly Moon based on the weird cover and the wacky title. But take five minutes, tell them a little of the story, maybe read a selection or two, and they can't wait to get their hands on it.
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challenging high readers
Old 01-05-2006, 11:39 AM
 
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I would also say to make sure to have a variety of reading material for advanced readers. I have had the same problem in my classroom and I shared some books I would recommend for them by giving little 'tidbits' to get them interested. I found that to be very successful. I also had to establish guidelines for choosing a book. We have several different reading incentive programs so the books they read for the program have to be pre-approved.
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Challenging Reading Material
Old 01-06-2006, 04:35 AM
 
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I believe that there needs to be a balance between students reading for enjoyment and challenging themselves - ideally, those things should be integrated. I've found that if I talk up a book that I love, my students will often want to read it. I also try to help students match books to what I know of their personalities. Also, most of my gifted students prefer non-fiction to fiction, so that genre is naturally more challenging. My students keep an index card file book in the room next to my library that's called "Got Books?" When a student reads a book, they quickly fill out a card that gives the book's title, author, level, summary and rating (on a 5 star scale) - along with their name. When a student can't decide what to read next, they go look through the cards in the box and can ask questions to their peers. They like this a lot! It's also easy for me, because as I read a new book, I'll fill one out too!
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Challenging High Readers
Old 01-13-2006, 05:12 PM
 
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I disagree with you. I don't think it's ridiculous to expect children to read books that are at their level. If I have a student reading at a 7th grade reading level who is reading Arthur books, that is a problem. I have given my class many mini-lessons about picking books at their level. I have also conferenced with them about this. And yes, it is independent, but when I read for fun, I'm not going to pick up a second grade book. All of the research demonstrates the benefits of students reading books at their independent reading level.


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IR and just right books
Old 02-01-2006, 05:42 PM
 
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When I teach my kids to pick just right books we discuss a smooth ride. I do talk about how fun it is for that ocassional fast down hill ride (an easy book). I want my strong readers reading just right books the majority of the time... But the bottom line is they are 8 and are interested in books that are also socially/emotionaly aproppriate for 8 year olds. If they want to read the new Henry and Mudge that just came out...great! It is not going to take them long to read and it is not like they are reading it all week. With that said I try to expose my high reads with many different genres of books. My school (we work with Tufts Univerisity) has always had the outwards vs. upward approach also. We try to stretch them in genre rather then giving them books that might not be developmentally appropriate for them.

A previous poster commented that when you choose a book as an adult to read that you do not choose one at a second grade level. I once read that Danielle Steel (sp??) writes at a third grade level.... I think there is a place for relaxing reading.
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Yeah, but that would mean
Old 02-08-2006, 09:20 PM
 
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admitting to reading Danielle Steele, and who wants to do that? Third grade sounds just about right. Yes, reading at their level is quite important. If they want to read below their level, they can do it, but not in my class, and not for credit on their reading log.
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challenging gifted readers
Old 05-27-2006, 11:00 AM
 
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If you are looking for a program to challenge your students, try here:
www.greatbooks.org

I have used Junior Great Books with second, third, fifth and sixth graders... they are excellent literature and they stretch their reading abilities.
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not all right
Old 07-04-2006, 01:53 PM
 
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on your statements. While it is true, there is nothing wrong with students reading challenging books. It is up to you to scaffold and model higher thinking connections with comprehesion strategies and literature circles. How would they know to do this if you didn't teach them. I would also recomend bringing in some complicated non fiction books with lots of features and start teaching your students how to read non fiction.

Just because you wouldn't pick up a 2nd grade book there is nothing wrong with someone who does. You need to be careful with that sort of statement, as piture books are some of the best writing models and resources to teach things like inferencing, stiring metecognition, and modeling quality writing. When you teach comprehension startegies you might supplement instruction with great piture books like Patricia Poloco for example. Did you know magazines like USweekly sell more copies than poular mechanics!? Most people do not like "hard" reading.

If you have a 7th grader reading Arthur, i would explore what that student is gaining from that. has to be something wonderful for them! I know if Judy Blume writes a book I am going to read it right away!
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