Though I technically missed hours 1 through 4 of Dewey's Read-a-Thon, I did wake up this morning and finish 2 books that I had started earlier this week. The first one was The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child, by Donalyn Miller. This book is written by a 6th grade teacher, and it focuses on teaching elementary age children to love reading. However, I've found some things in it that I want to use in my college classes as well. I especially love that Miller creates time for students to read for pleasure during classroom hours, and that she lets them pick their own books. She also talks about reading aloud to students, and modeling a reading life. These last two things I've done with my own children, and my daughter (age 10) is a voracious reader herself, and my 4 year old loves to be read aloud to and is making the first steps towards learning to read himself. I've always felt that the fact that I create time and space for my children to read, that I model reading behavior for them, and that I surround them with books, has helped ignite their interest in reading. I'm excited to find a book that confirms my thoughts about reading, and is showing me how to bring these techniques into a classroom setting! I think teachers of any grade, and parents can all benefit from this book.
The other book I finished reading this morning is A Grief Observed, by C.S. Lewis. This is a book I needed to read for the class I'm teaching. My class is discussing the book next Thursday as part of our "Life and Death" unit.